On the 6th of May, the First Matches of the World Championship in Ice Hockey 2016 Take Place in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Slovenia as the winner of the first division will play in the elite hockey league in 2017

The opening ceremony of the tournament is held in the Moscow “VTB Ice Palace”. The event will be attended by the Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Assistant to the President Igor Levitin, Minister of Sport Vitaly Mutko, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin, and President of the International Ice Hockey Federation Rene Fasel.

The World Championship involves 16 teams divided into two groups — with eight teams in each. The Matches of Group A will take place in the “VTB Ice Palace”, where the teams from Russia, Sweden, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Latvia, Norway, Denmark, and Kazakhstan will play. The Group B (the “Yubileyniy” Sports Centre in St. Petersburg) includes the teams from Canada, Finland, the USA, Slovakia, Belarus, France, Germany, and Hungary.

The Slovenian national team, having defeated Austria last week (2:1), and won the first league tournament, was qualified to the elite division. At the next World Championship, it will play among the 16 strongest teams in the world.

Katowice. Last week, the Slovenian national ice hockey team performed super-successfully in the subgroup B of the World Championship in ice hockey. Slovenia entered the elite division of the world hockey after its victory over Austria with a humble score of 2:1.

On the final day of the competition, the trainees of Nick Zupančič needed only the victory in their fight for the first place. The Slovenes got a comeback win in a tense struggle.

They started the game unsuccessfully, but in the eleventh minute, the score equalled thanks to a well-placed shot by Robert Sabolič. While the decisive shot was driven by Ken Ograjenšek at the twenty-eighth minute.

The best player in the national team was the goalkeeper Gashper Kroshel who saved 26 out of 27 goal attempts.

Post-match comments

Nick Zupančič, the head coach:Those were difficult games since they were qualifiers. We started this match nervously: the Austrians scored the first goal, while we were back in the game, having levelled the match after a power-play. Our team then started playing more like a well-oiled machine. During the last game segment, we had a few injuries, but demonstrated our male character. I cannot single out anyone. This is the victory of the whole Slovenian team.

Jan Urbas, a forwarder of the Slovenian team:Our four minutes power-play was not the best, but then we played very well. Gashper had a very good dual, and all the guys played meritoriously. There is no excuse for the match against Poland, but I think that in the last two games we showed our character and today concluded the game logically. This is such a pleasant feeling when you are beating your northern neighbours.

Rok Tichar, a forwarder of the Slovenian team: We had to fight till the end. Indeed, that was a crucial game. The last match of the season. It was necessary to hump it. We started the game well, but at the beginning of the third period, we had some problems. In the match with Poland, something went wrong. However, after that loss, we pulled ourselves together and demonstrated a mature play against the Koreans. Today our rivals were the Austrians — and this is always a difficult match. We showed a good game. Of course, there were mistakes, but we managed to win. Before the game, we said to ourselves that it was necessary to play our trump card. And we really managed to do that.

Group B, the fifth round

Austria — Slovenia 1:2 (1:1, 1:0, 0:0)

(Komarek, 6; Sabolič, 11; Ograjenšek, 28)

Italy — South Korea 2:1 (1:0, 0:0, 1:1)

(Ramoser, 3; Tudin, 55; Regan, 57)

Poland — Japan 10:4 (6:1, 1:1, 3:2)

(Wronka, 1; Chmielewski, 4, 45; Malasinski, 7; Kruczek, 11; Pasiut, 13; Dziubinski, 18; Baginski, 24; Dronia, 56; Wajda, 60; Ueno, 20; Kawai, 26; Obara, 42; Nišiwaki, 45.)

Final Standings:

  1. Slovenia 5 4 0 0 1 18:8 12 points
  2. Italy 5 3 0 0 2 11:10 9
  3. Poland 5 3 0 0 2 17:12 9
  4. Austria 5 2 1 0 2 11:8 8
  5. South Korea 5 2 0 1 2 11:11 7
  6. Japan 5 0 0 0 5 7:26 0


Source: delo.si