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4 Jan 2018

Christmas ice hockey tournament kicks off in Minsk

Christmas ice hockey tournament kicks off in Minsk

MINSK, 4 January (BelTA) – The 14th Christmas amateur tournament for the prize of the President of Belarus gets underway in Minsk on 4 January. In a span of four days, eight teams will compete for the trophy of honor on the two rinks of Chizhovka Arena, BelTA has learned.

The tournament will open with the Group A match China vs Switzerland (12.30, small ice rink). China will make its debut at the Christmas tournament while Switzerland will make its 11th appearance in the Belarusian capital. The best result of the Swiss team at the Christmas tournament was the 4th place in 2010.

In the other match in Group A Belarus, the ten-time winner of the Christmas tournament, will face the United Arab Emirates that finished third last year (19.00, big ice rink).

Group B will also hold two matches on 4 January: the Balkans Team will take on Russia (13.00, big ice rink), and Sweden will play the Czech Republic (19.30, small ice rink). The Czech lineup includes World and Olympic champions.

The opening ceremony will take place in the main arena of the sports complex at 17.30.

The schedule of other matches in the preliminary round:

5 January

Switzerland vs UAE (12.30; small ice rink), Czech Republic vs Balkans (14.00; big ice rink), Belarus vs China (19.00; big ice rink), Sweden vs Russia (19.30; small ice rink).

6 January

Sweden vs Balkans (12.30; small ice rink), China vs UAE (13.00; big ice rink), Belarus vs Switzerland (19.00; big ice rink), Czech Republic vs Russia (19.30; small ice rink).

On 7 January the two second-placed teams will play in the bronze-medal match (13.00). The first-placed teams will advance to the gold-medal game (18.00). Both matches will take place at Chizhovka Arena.

The Golden Puck national competition will take place during the Christmas tournament, too. The competition will feature eight U15 teams (six from the regions and two from Minsk). The Golden Puck final will be held at Chizhovka Arena on 7 January.

The fans can come to the sports complex between the matches to take part in various competitions, upload their photos to social media with the hashtag #hockeyforeveryone, and participate in the Best Fan contest.

Members of the teams will also take part in the charity campaign Christmas Tradition and visit children’s home No. 5 in Minsk on 6 January. The institution has already received Br25,000 in assistance. The charity campaign is organized by the Belarus President’s Sport Club and the Belarusian Ice Hockey Federation.

The team of the President of Belarus is the ten-time winner of the Christmas international tournament (2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2017). Team Russia is a three-time champion (2007, 2011 and 2015).


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