MOSCOW – The Ice Hockey Federation of Russia named Valeri Bragin head coach of the Russian U20 national team following a meeting on Tuesday in Moscow. He returns to replace Mikhail Varnakov, who was coaching the team in the last two years.
Bragin was coaching the Russian U20 national team in three IIHF World Junior Championships and led it to gold in Buffalo 2011 after an eight-year draught, and to silver in 2005 and 2012. He also led Russia to gold in the 2004 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship.
Most recently the 58-year-old was coaching the KHL’s CSKA Moscow in the 2012/2013 season. He was also an assistant coach for Russia at the 2013 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship and during the last season he was coaching Russia’s B national team.
On the U20 national team he will be assisted by Yevgeni Koreshkov.
At the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship Russia will play its preliminary-round games in Toronto in Group B along with Sweden, the Czech Republic, Switzerland and Denmark.
Yuri Rumyantsev, who has been in charge for the U17 national team last year, will continue with the 1997-born players and coach the U18 national team in the upcoming season. It will be his second IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship after 2011 when Russia medalled for the last time by winning bronze.