BRATISLAVA – The Slovak Ice Hockey Federation continues with Ernest Bokros as U20 national team head coach while Norbert Javorcik will return as head coach of the U18 national team.
“[Bokros] has led the U20 national team for a long time, had success with it and we consider him at the moment as the best choice for this position,” said new head of national teams Miroslav Satan. “Although he stopped as head coach of the U20 national team after the last season, I asked him to extend for another year. I’m glad he agreed.”
The 57-year-old, who previously coached club teams in the top Czech and Slovak leagues, will coach the U20 national team for the seventh year since joining in 2011. In 2015 he led Slovakia to a bronze-medal finish at the IIHF World Junior Championship – the best placing in the competition for the country it only achieved once before, in 1999. In the other years under Bokros, the team was ranked between sixth and eighth at the World Juniors.
The federation nominated 34 players (click here
for the roster) who will assemble in Piestany on Thursday. From 28-30 July, Slovakia will host a tournament in Zilina with the Czech Republic, Germany and Switzerland. Later a roster will be named of players that will join the U20 national team that will compete in the top Slovak senior league in preparation for the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship in Buffalo that will take place from 26 December 2017 to 5 January 2018.
Slovakia will play against defending champion USA, Canada, Denmark and Finland in its group in Buffalo.
After starting with a sixth-place finish at the recent 2017 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship on home ice, Norbert Javorcik will continue as head coach of the U18 national team. He will be assisted by Jan Pardavy, Vladimir Turan and goaltending coach Roman Mega. Javorcik will work both for the federation and as head coach of HC ’05 Banska Bystrica, where he’s the new coach of the U20 team.
The U18 national team will compete on home ice at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial tournament in August. Next spring the team will play at the 2018 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship, 19-29 April 2018, in Chelyabinsk and Magnitogorsk where Slovakia is seeded in the same group with Finland, host Russia, the Czech Republic and France.
Jan Lipiansky assisted by Andrej Podkonicky will coach the U17 national team and Viliam Cacho the U16 national team.