If there is anything at all that is certain about the game of ice hockey, it is that it is entirely unpredictable at the best of times.
Coming off a tough loss to formidable rivals Luxembourg, our Boys in Green now must look ahead to their match versus Greece tomorrow, Monday 16th of April 2012. Puck drops at 1pm local time, which is 11am Irish time. This game presents a great opportunity for Team Ireland to secure their first win in this tournament.
In international play, Ireland has gone 1-1 against Greece, where in 2009 we lost to the Greeks 7-3, and then went on to defeat them by a score of 3-1in 2010. This was the year Ireland won Gold in Luxembourg, Greece taking silver.
Tomorrow, the Greeks, too, will be looking to take advantage of this game as they lost their first match versus Turkey by a score of 6-1. So, both teams need a win. Both teams lost their first match in the tournament by a 5-goal deficit. These teams are fairly evenly matched based on their international record against one another.
Finally, and perhaps most notably, both teams have gone through similar struggles at home with a lack of training facilities. This makes for one very interesting and exciting hockey match.
We here in Ireland have absolutely no doubt that our National Team is up to the task. Now that the first game jitters are gone and the legs are stretched, everyone at home is looking forward to a big performance from our Boys in Green.
Asked for a comment ahead of tomorrow’s clash against Greece, Ireland Headcoach, Kenny Redmond said ‘We have to regroup tonight and work on correcting simple mistakes and believe in ourselves’.
Avid hockey fans will note that in the Top Division of the Women’s World Championships which just finished up in Vermont, USA, the Canadian Women’s Hockey Team took home their first World Championship Gold in several years (the Americans won the Gold the three previous years). This, the Canadian girls did, after a crushing defeat in the first round of the tournament, that being a 9-2 loss to the Americans. Despite losing this first game by such a large margin to their rivals, the Canadian women were able to overcome this adversity and beat the USA in the final in OT.
So, nonbelievers and weary-hearted beware, anything can happen in this game. So, heads up, sticks on the ice, and Go Green Go! We believe in you.
Follow the live scores for all matches on www.iihf.com. Men’s Division III. Also catch us on twitter: @IIHA & @IIHFScores, #TeamIreland and the IIHA’s FaceBook page.