The UCI Road World Championships, often referred to as the World Cycling Championships, is the annual world championship for bicycle road racing organized by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI). The UCI Road World Championships include championships for elite men's road race and individual time trial, with other contests also held.
This year's World Cycling Championships have been ongoing this week in Bergen, in far northern Norway, and conclude today with the elite men's road race. A bit of controversy erupted when two of the three cyclists on the Under 23 men's race podium are already riding for professional teams. The winner of the UCI Road World Championships road race is considered the World Cycling Champion (or World Road Cycling Champion) and earns the right to wear the Rainbow Jersey for a full year in road race or stage events. The road race is contested by riders organized by national cycling teams as opposed to commercially sponsored or trade teams, which is the standard in professional cycling. The rainbow jersey is normally integrated into the team jersey for races throughout the year. Last year's world champion, in competitions held at Doha, Qatar, was Slovakia's Peter Sagan. He has reigned for the last two years, having won in Richmond, Virginia, USA the year before. The two countries with far and beyond numbers regarding the most gold medals won at Cycling Worlds are Belgium, firmly in first place, and Italy, in second place. All others pale by comparison. Spaniard Alejandro Valverde has won six individual medals, but so far has never been world champion.
In International Cricket, today features two interesting matches, both One Day Internationals (ODI). Australia continues its tour of India today with a third ODI at Holkar Cricket Stadium, Indore, and although the Aussies have fallen prey to prime Indian spinners often throughout this tour, competition should remain close in today's match. Two-down in the series, Australia are faced with a must-win situation to have a chance at the trophy. India has been playing strong throughout the series, and is confident of a win. The West Indies continue their tour of England today with their 3rd ODI at County Ground, Bristol. West Indies, who are World Champions in the twenty twenty format (T20) have had some success in those games, but otherwise their tour has continued with mixed results. India's National Cricket League teams are engaged in four test matches today, these four matches all conclude on Monday. 16 teams are currently engaged in pool play at four different venues in the 2017 Africa T20 World Cup.
In the USA, in NFL play this weekend, none of these pro football teams have a bye week this week. The Houston Texans will play at the New England Patriots at Foxboro this weekend. After their season ended at Gillette Stadium in the playoffs, the Texans look to prove that they are a completely different team with J.J. Watt back in the fold. Meanwhile, the Patriots could have a star of their own returning in tight end Rob Gronkowski, well known to readers of this space, to face the Texans' vaunted defense.