Great Britain’s ice hockey team suffered a disappointing defeat at the Sheffield Arena last night ahead of their World Championships campaign in Slovakia next month.
After a 5-4 win against opponents Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod in Nottingham on Saturday night, GB took the same opponents to South Yorkshire but were on the wrong end of the stick this time around, going down 5-2 to their Russian counterparts.
Despite a goal after 17 seconds from Mark Richardson, GB couldn’t maintain control in the early portion of the game and got overwhelmed at the back end of the game, with Torpedo winning the decisive third period 3-0.
The team will now head to Slovakia to continue their preparations for the tournament, where they will face the likes of Canada, the USA and Germany in the pool stages in their first top-flight tournament campaign since 1994.
Their 25-man squad for the tournament was named last week, with five Sheffield Steelers players named amongst them, including the franchise’s fourth-highest all-time goal scorer, Robert Dowd.
Head coach Pete Russell said the selection of the squad involved some of the toughest decisions he and his coaching staff have ever had to make.
“The training camp was intense and everybody lifted each other up with the intensity when they performed during the week and in the games against Italy and Hungary.
“I am so disappointed for all the players and it was not a nice conversation to tell them they had not made the final 25.”