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Chile Headlines: Peru Border, Copa Libertadores, Fernando González

Chile Headlines: Peru Border, Copa Libertadores, Fernando González
February 22
06:00 2012

Chile- Peru Border reopened

Floods brought up some nasty surprises,  land mines left over from a time when relations between Chile and Peru were more strained, forced government officials to order the closure of the boarder between the two countries in the interest of public safety.

This section of Route 5  is used by up to 20,000 people per day and its closure has had a significant economical impact and trapping many tourists on both sides of the boarder.  According to sources on the ground at the crossing as of this morning the boarder has been reopened.

The mines were planted during the Pinochet dictatorship, with suspicions growing about surprise attacks from Chile’s neighbors.  Specialist military bomb disposal experts have been involved in clearing the area.  Some of the mines have been control detonated by the specialists.

The boarder closure saw many Chilean nationals have to spend the night at the Chilean consulate in Tacna. Due to large number of  Chileans seeking shelter many had to spend Monday night sleeping in tents in the garden of the consulate.

Union Española win in Bolivia

Union Española have continued their impressive run of form in the Copa Libertadores, coming from behind to beat Bolivar in Bolivia. Things got off to the worst possible start, with Bolivar scoring in the opening minute of the match.

The high altitudes in Bolivia often see teams resort to defensive strategies and hope to get away with a draw. Within the last thirty minutes of play, “Los Hispanicos” put three goals into the net, to give an emphatic 3-1 victory.

While they have dropped down the table in the local competition, their form in the Copa Libertadores has been impressive. They qualified by beating Mexico’s Tigres and had no trouble with Junior from Colombia in their opening match.

Last year’s runners up, Penarol (Uruguay) were thrashed 4-0 by Atletico Nacional from Colombia. Both teams share a group with Universidad de Chile, who were disappointing in their loss against Atletico.

Fernando González moves through to second round in Argentina

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Fernando González showed signs of his former glory in his first round performance in Viña del Mar at the VTR Open. Photo by Francisco Castillo via Copa Santo Tomas

While the big hitting “Bomber of La Reina” announced his retirement from tennis will take place next month, it was his opponent who had to retire in the first round of the ATP tournament in Buenos Aires.

Spanish player Alberto Montanes lost the first set 7-5 and was down 1-0 in the second set when he withdrew from the match.  In his last tournament on South American soil, González will be hoping to continue through the draw after being given a wildcard entry.

González said after the match “It’s strange what happened to Albert, but it’s good for me. The more times I have a chance to play, the better.”  Despite losing in the first round in Sao Paulo, González moved slight up in the ATP rankings this week. The former world number 5 is ranked at 263.

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Daniel Boyle is an Australian living in Santiago. Daniel's main interests are sports, music and travel. He has a degree in Sports Management and is completing a Master of Arts (Writing). Daniel plays the sport of Freestyle Footbag and is hoping to spread it through Chile. In 2013 Daniel was granted a Start-Up Chile grant.

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