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article imageFour-star Russia brush aside Czechs as Euro 2012 gets underway

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By Kev Hedges     Jun 9, 2012 in Sports
Warsaw - Russia has emerged as the first country to impress on the opening day of the Euro 2012 soccer tournament finals. They swept aside the Czech Republic with a four-goal salvo with Andrei Arshavin, a constant thorn in the side of the Czechs.
Russia took just 15 minutes to unlock a Czech defence, propped up by the outstanding Chelsea keeper Petr Cech but he was unable to stem the wave upon wave of Russian attack and Alan Dzagoev scored the first of his two-goal brace. On 24 minutes, Roman Shirokov celebrated Russia's second with a sublime finish. The Czech defender, Pilar managed an early second half goal (52 mins) but it was to prove a mere consolation for the beleaguered Czechs as another from Dzagoev (79 mins) and a brilliant individual goal from former Tottenham player, Roman Pavlychenko (82 mins) sealed a 4-1 win for Russia.
Poland 1 Greece 1
Tournament co-hosts, Poland could only manage a 1-1 draw in the opening game against Greece. The home side dominated the first half and led thanks to a well-constructed header from Lewandowski (17 mins). Greece even had centre-back Papastathopoulos harshly dismissed for two soft bookings just before half time (44 mins). A fightback from the Greeks did not seem possible at half time but grit and determination in true Olympiad style saw the unfancied Greeks level when Poland's Arsenal goalkeeper, Wojciech Szczesny fumbled allowing Salpingidis to make it 1-1 (52 mins). Szczesny was later dismissed himself after hauling down goalscorer, Dimitris Salpigidis in the box (68 mins) and the resulting penalty failed to convert when stand-in keeper, Przeymyslaw Tyton brilliantly saved by correctly guessing the ball's path from Giorgos Karagounis’s weak penalty.
Day 2 of the tournament gets under way on Saturday with Netherlands facing Denmark at 1700BST (1200EDT) and later a mouthwatering clash between Germany and Portugal at 2000BST (1500EDT). Group B is known as the Group of Death in this competition and Canadian broadcaster, TSN will be covering day two of the Euro 2012 Championships.
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