World Championship Under 20s Ice Hockey concluded in Dumfries on Saturday with host nation Great Britain missing out to a superb Japan team for promotion to Division I Group B.

Throughout the week of highly competitive ice hockey, it was clear that Great Britain’s head to head with Japan in the final match of the 6 nation round robin tournament would be decisive.

Japan deservedly took gold after clinically despatching Great Britain 5-2 in Saturday night’s showdown.

Throughout the week the team from the far East was brightest in attack and most durable in defence. Their 10,000 mile round trip to Dumfries ended in triumph, and neighbours Korea pipped Great Britain for silver.

The 2018 Under 20s Division II Group A tournament was the fifth World Championship to be held at Dumfries Ice Bowl in just five years. The tournament continued the highly successful partnership between Dumfries and Galloway Council and Ice Hockey UK to develop the sport in South West Scotland and bring world championships to the region.

Thousands of fans, many new to the sport, have taken in the action since the World Championship started on Sunday 10 December.

The Council estimates that hosting this event has created an economic boost for Dumfries and Galloway of more than £180,000. Great Britain and Korea spent five days in Dumfries before their first fixtures began, to aid their preparations, and many local businesses secured contracts to provide services for the event.

Councillor Adam Wilson, the Council’s Events Champion, said: “This ice hockey championship has been professionally run by all concerned and provided exciting viewing for spectators. It has been a privilege for the Council to welcome so many gifted young ice hockey players to Dumfries and to host our national team at Under 20s level. It is great to see another world championship take place at the Ice Bowl and make use of the facilities it has to offer.”
Project manager, Struan Tonnar, who is captain of the Solway Sharks and also works for the Council as a health and fitness instructor, said: “We’ve had a really great week. The level of hockey has been fantastic and I really think we have given the hockey fans a great event to support. The Ice Bowl is one of the best facilities of its kind in the country and we continue to deliver top level tournaments with the confidence of Ice Hockey UK. This is due to the exceptional effort of all the staff involved and the small army of volunteers who give their time to help out. We look forward to bringing world championship ice hockey to Dumfries again in the near future.”
Andy French, general secretary of Ice Hockey UK, said: “I’m delighted at how the whole week went and how we have advanced the sport of ice hockey. Great Britain took Japan to the wire and really enthused the crowds who came along to Dumfries from all over the country. The tried and trusted working partnership we have with the Council enabled Ice Hockey UK to deliver this world championship to the same high standards as previous tournaments.”

This was the fifth World Championship the Council and Ice Hockey UK have brought to Dumfries within five years.

Previous tournaments have included the Men’s Under 20s World Championship Division 1B in December 2013 and the Men’s Under 18s World Championship in March/April 2014. The most recent World Championship held locally was the Women’s World Championship Division II Group A.

Each World Championship creates a minimum economic impact of £1800,000. This economic impact to the regional economy is easily tracked, via accommodation spend for all teams, their support staff and event officials- as the teams which comprise 28 players and support staff spend 9 to 10 days in the area. Each tournament creates approx. 1500 to 2000 bed-nights which is the major source of these positive economic impacts, together with the spend in the regional economy by organisers, visiting fans staying overnight and the daily expenditure of all fans that come into D&G.

The Council therefore secures a superb return for public investment in the event, and all event impacts are collated as part of the unique Dumfries and Galloway Major Festivals and Events Strategy, 2014-2018.


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