Sports News in Brief: Danish NHL players likely to miss World Championships

Elsewhere, there was tennis, cycling and snooker glory, but tragedy on the racing track

When Denmark plays host to the IIHF World Championships in ice hockey next month, they could very well be without a good portion of their top NHL players.

The NHL season is drawing near and five Danes are assured of lacing up their skates for the playoffs, which coincides with the IIHF tournament being held in Copenhagen and Herning.

Among the Danes participating in the NHL playoffs are Mikkel Bødker and Jannik Hansen (San Jose Sharks), Lars Eller (Washington Capitals), Nikolaj Ehlers (Winnipeg Jets) and Frederik Andersen (Toronto Maple Leafs).

READ MORE: Superliga nearing climax as playoffs kick in

Still a chance
Furthermore, Oliver Bjorkstrand is also in a position to qualify with the Columbus Blue Jackets, leaving veteran Frans Nielsen (Detroit Red Wings) as the only NHL Dane assured of not taking part in the playoffs.

The silver lining is that should the Danes’ teams get knocked out in the first round of the NHL playoffs, they would still have a chance to take part in the championships – which kicks off on May 4 – pending approval from their clubs.

Denmark are currently 75/1 to win the championship – the ninth ranked team on most bookmaker lists.

Danish delight in Belgium
Mads Pedersen became the second Dane in history, and first since Rolf Sørensen in 1997, to reach the podium of the renowned Tour of Flanders cycling race on Sunday as the 22-year-old Trek rider finished second just behind Dutchman Niki Terpstra. Michael Valgren (Astana) almost became the second Dane to podium on the day, but had to settle for fourth place. Magnus Cort (Astana) and Søren Kragh Andersen (Sunweb) also enjoyed solid days with finishes in the top 60.

Tragedy on the track
The Danish racing community is in mourning following the news that motorcylist Julie Brøndum Mortensen was killed during a training session at the Hockenheim track in Germany on Saturday. Mortensen, 30, was on the track training for the German endurance race, the 1000 km Hockenheim, when disaster struck. She was to take part in the race as part of a team purely made up of women, the 6Speed Girls, on a Triumph Daytona 675R.

Tauson’s terrific hattrick
Denmark latest tennis starlet Clara Tauson enjoyed a scintillating week by netting three titles over the course of seven days. The 15-year-old junior won the City of Florenze on Sunday by coming back from a poor start to beat the 17-year-old Eleonora Molinaro of Luxembourg 0-6, 6-4, 6-1. Just one day before Tauson won the Florenze doubles, and her double followed another junior title in Croatia a week earlier. The sterling results have catapulted Tauson into the top 10 for juniors.

Danish snooker history
The snooker player Daniel Kandi Andersen made Danish snooker history with a rare maximum break on Saturday at the Danish Championships. A maximum break consists of pocketing 36 shots in a row, 15 reds and 15 blacks and then the colours in sequence, to clear the table, and Andersen became the first player to ever accomplish the feat in an official match in Denmark. Andersen, who is also a trance music DJ and producer, won the Danish Championships five years on the trot from 2004-09. See Andersen’s moment of glory in the video below.