Saturday, September 24, 2022

USA Hockey asks IIHF to reschedule women’s U18 tournament Taiwan News | 2021-12-28 08:20:14

USA Hockey has asked the International Ice Hockey Federation to reconsider canceling the Women’s Under-18 World Championships to be held in Sweden in January.

This is the second consecutive year that the tournament has been cancelled. The 2021 event was also canceled due to the pandemic. The IIHF stated that the decision to cancel all January tournaments was based on the recommendation of the organization’s medical committee and that rescheduling the women’s under-18 championship was not possible due to league commitments within Sweden.

“I believe the IIHF is trying to make sure that if they run the event they are as safe as possible for every participant,” Pat Kelleher, executive director of USA Hockey, said on Monday. “However, we have requested that they look specifically at the under-18s and see what they can do to at least postpone it and explore options with the countries involved in that incident.”

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Kelher called it “an important event for the future of women’s hockey” and a momentous event for the players and staff involved.

The IIHF’s announcement last week – two days before the start of the men’s world junior tournament, which was not affected by the cancellation – sparked outrage in the hockey community. US star Kendall Coyne called it unacceptable and tweeted, “Find out how to play U18 Worlds safely this season.”

He is far from alone in that feeling. NHL’s Ottawa Senators forward Drake Batherson saw an uproar on social media and received special attention as 21-year-old sister May plays Division I college hockey at Syracuse.

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“Hopefully they can reschedule it,” Batherson said on a video call on Monday. “They deserve to play as much as we do. I want to see that tournament happen. I watch a ton of girls’ hockey. I watch the Olympics, the girls’ team, and I see my sister all the time He’s such a great player, and he deserves to show off his skills as much as we do.”

Group A, Group B and Division II women’s under-18 tournaments were also cancelled, as were Group B and Division II men’s under-20 tournaments.

“Challenging conditions all the way,” Kelleher said. “We certainly hope that there are ways for people to continue looking for solutions to some of these issues down the road.”

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