Great Britain Head Coach Pete Russell says getting the team together for last weekend’s Euro Ice Hockey Challenge was so important for preparations for this year’s World Championship.
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Russell assembled a 31-player roster for the three matches which saw GB beat Japan (3-0), Poland (4-1) and Romania (6-1).
GB will now have four international challenge games in April with two matches against Latvia being followed by two games against Hungary.
The UK will then host the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship Division I – Group A at the Motorpoint Arena in Nottingham from 29th April to 5th May.
Russell said: “It was good for us to get together. I want to thank all the teams for letting the players commit to it, that was awesome.
“On ice was good but they got on well off the ice as usual which was important. We had a lot of new guys and we got to see everybody – how they reacted and how they were together.
“Japan was a tough game to start with but then we took over and then Poland it was hard at the start, but we took over that game too. Against Romania you could tell it was our third game.”
The roster for the World Championship in April will be limited to 22 players plus an emergency netminder as cover.
“It’s not going to be easy to reduce the roster but it’s a good position to be in,” said Russell.
“You see if everyone is healthy first and then see who’s playing well and what the right combinations are.
“It was good to play in Nottingham as we are coming here for the World Championship and I think that was important.
“It would be superb if the building in Nottingham could be full for the tournament. A big backing would be massive for us.”
IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship Division I – Group A
Great Britain, Italy, Lithuania, Korea, Poland, Romania,
Saturday 29th April to Friday 5th May 2023
Motorpoint Arena, Nottingham
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