BRNO, Czech Republic – Canada’s National Men’s Under-18 Team has arrived in the Czech Republic, where it will take part in the 2012 IIHF Ice Hockey World U18 Championship from April 12-22. Canada finished fourth at last year’s world championship in Crimmitschau and Dresden, Germany and last won U18 gold at the 2008 tournament in Kazan, Russia.
Canada opens the world championship on Thursday against Denmark, and will also face the Czech Republic, Finland and the United States in Group A preliminary round action. Germany, Latvia, Russia, Switzerland and Sweden comprise Group B. The semifinals are set for Friday, April 20, with the bronze medal and gold medal games scheduled for Sunday, April 22. All medal round games will take place in Brno.
Canada’s National Men’s Under-18 Team coaching staff in collaboration with Hockey Canada and the Canadian Hockey League announced Wednesday that defenceman Mathew Dumba (Calgary, Alta./Red Deer, WHL) will be Canada’s captain at the 2012 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship. Dumba captained Canada to a gold medal at the 2011 Memorial of Ivan Hlinka tournament in August.
Forward Kerby Rychel (Tecumseh, Ont./Windsor, OHL) and defenceman Adam Pelech (Toronto, Ont./Erie, OHL) will serve as alternate captains.
“All three players have tremendous leadership qualities” says head coach Jesse Wallin. “They have all shown a presence around the team and are respected by their teammates. We are pleased with our leadership group.”
Canada took part in two pre-tournament games after arriving in the Czech Republic, defeating Germany 5-3 on Sunday and the Czech Republic 5-4 on Monday.
Canada's roster includes 10 players from the Ontario Hockey League, seven players from the Western Hockey League and three players from the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. Six players helped Canada's National Men's Summer Under-18 Team capture gold at the Memorial of Ivan Hlinka tournament in August 2011 in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
TSN/RDS, the official broadcasters of Hockey Canada, will broadcast Canada’s final preliminary round game against the United States on Tuesday, April 17, as well as both semifinals on Friday, April 20 and both medal games on Sunday, April 22nd. Check your local listings for game times in your area.
FASTHockey will webcast two of Canada’s preliminary round games, against Denmark on Thursday, April 12 and Monday, April 16 against the Czech Republic. The games are available on a pay-per-view basis at www.hockeycanada.fasthockey.com. FASTHockey had planned to webcast Canada’s game against Finland on Saturday, April 14, but due to the venue change from Brno to Breclav last week, the game will not be available.
For more information on Canada’s National Men’s Under-18 Team please visit www.hockeycanada.ca and follow along through social media at www.twitter.com/HockeyCanada, www.twitter.com/HC_TeamCanada and www.facebook.com/HockeyCanada.