In Summary
  • Croatia knocked out Russia in the quarter finals securing a place in 2018 World Cup semis.
  • It is the first time since 1998 that Croatia is advancing to the World Cup semi-finals.

Apart from scores, the World Cup brings about more thrills with each season. From the catchy anthems to colourful flags and jerseys, the world all over is gripped by a state of euphoria.

Sports betting companies dive in for the kill as fortunes are made…or lost. Animals are not left out of the hullabaloo either. Their perceived psychic powers are said to predict who will win.

It is a season of pomp and colour and also of outstanding discoveries.

In the last World Cup of 2014, former President Jose Mujica of Uruguay become renowned as the ‘World’s poorest president'. He lived in a farm, drove a modest car and donated 90 per cent of his $12,000 (Sh1.2 million) salary to charities, remaining with only $774 (Sh78,000).

This year, another president, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović of Croatia, won many hearts globally for her enthusiastic celebration after Croatia knocked out Russia in the quarter finals securing a place in 2018 World Cup semis.

Croatia's players celebrate winning the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match against Russia at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi on July 7, 2018.  PHOTO| AFP

Croatia's players celebrate winning the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match against Russia at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi on July 7, 2018. PHOTO| AFP

It is the first time since 1998 that Croatia is advancing to the World Cup semi-finals.

This could explain the victory jig by President Grabar-Kitarović clad in Croatia national colours -- red and white -- right in front of Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev following the penalty victory shoot-out against Russia in Sochi.

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