After several months of procrastination, the tunnel finally came to an end. In a few months, World was postponed, then canceled. Finally to move to Calgary. It must be said that the small world of women’s hockey had not really digested the treatment that the IIHF gave to the tournaments in Halifax and Truro, Nova Scotia. Originally, as teams begin arriving at competition sites in March, the international federation decided to postpone it until May. But in April, the World Championships was canceled due to the re-emergence of Kovid-19 in Canada… while the health protocol was adopted a few days earlier. The displeasure of the players, who remembered that the men’s U20 and U18 could have fun on the ice when they couldn’t play for more than a year. There is a slightly discriminatory aspect…
On 30 April, the IIHF and Hockey Canada announced that the Women’s Worlds would finally take place in Calgary from 20 to 31 August. 859 days after the final, ten nations will clash for a world title with the Beijing Olympics just under six months in their sight. A final that left a bitter taste for the Finns, who thought they had won in overtime, before the goal was canceled due to a competition handicap. In the process, the Americans won on penalties. A major error in judgment that even prompted the IIHF to apologize!
a strange formula
Group A consists of the five best nations, with the other five forming Group B. This also means that the five Group A selections are guaranteed quarter-final play and do not risk any relegation. However, there will be a significant extra match as each loser of the quarter-finals will have a chance to move into Group A and achieve this protected nation status.
Big favorites, of course American. Which remains on five consecutive crowns after Canada’s long domination. NS United States of america Has made its female selection a showcase that has captivated even the gentlemen a bit, with very erratic results. Fifteen 2019 World Champion players are still in the American ranks, including stars Hilary Knight, Alex Rigsby Cavallini, Amanda Kessel and Kendall Coyne Schofield. Coach Joel Johnson knows that failure is almost forbidden to him after reaping the bulk of his resources to prepare for this Olympic year: it’s been a year since he had his players in hand.
NS Canada Think of only one thing: to eventually knock the Americans down to reach the finals. The Canadians in particular want to forget a disappointing failure: in the previous edition, they lost in the semi-final against Finland and did not play for gold for the first time in the tournament’s 29-year history. Canada had to be content with bronze. Terrible for a country that won the first eight world titles and four Olympic tournaments in history. Star? Perhaps Mary-Philippe Polin who won a double in the final of the Vancouver Olympics in 2010 before making the difference in overtime at the Sochi 2014 Games.
It is evident Finland Will try to win a gold medal that has (wrongly) escaped her in 2019, but will be defeated by the man who is probably the best goalkeeper in the world: Noora Ratti. A third of the crew is nascent internationally, which can be a real hurdle. But – as always – Finland should be on the podium.
Otherwise, one or two nations are likely to disturb the hierarchy. Starting from Russians (ROC) who are still hoping for a podium, but who were replaced by Canada in the shorter final (0-7) in 2019. Czech Republic, she would rely on her exile in North America first and would be around 5th/6th in the world…Germany One who doesn’t say it very loudly, but who has growing ambition. But the World Cup will serve as a springboard for properly tackling the pre-Olympic qualifications to be held in Füssen.
And Switzerland in all this?
Our national team won their dress rehearsal 4-2 against the Czechs the day before yesterday. This is very encouraging with a selection that needs to be rebuilt. We remember that after the 5th place of the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang, many officials starting from the goalkeeper Florence Schelling, had bowed. The fall was brutal, but as a protected team suis Despite five losses in five matches and a goal difference of -22, they retained their place in the top flight. Together Lara Stalder And Alina Muller, the coach Colin Mullery However, it has two of the best players in the world in its ranks. Will it be enough to play the loot game? Speaking of Swiss medals, let’s keep our place in Group A.
In Sweden’s absence, exiled, with Japan, ns Hungary And this DenmarkWe probably have the three least impressive teams out there, but who knows: In this new COVID year, the surprise has already been Legion.
this night’s program
Czech Republic – Denmark (8 pm)
Canada – Finland (0 hrs)
Switzerland – United States (3h30)
— IIHF (@IIHFHockey) August 19, 2021
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