After Thailand hosted the 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey U20 Asia and Oceania Championship and facilitated one of the Learn to Play Programs earlier this year, the upcoming event is another proof for the rapid development in this country and for Women’s Hockey in the region itself. With Kyrgyzstan and Iran, the Asia and Oceania Ice Hockey family welcome also two newcomers playing the first time in this category.
The tournament is played in two groups by having Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and UA Emirates playing in Group A and India, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan and Iran playing in Group B. After a single round robin in each group, the first two teams from Group A are automatically qualified for the semi-final and the remaining teams need to qualify for the semi-final against the best two teams coming from Group B, followed by Placement, Bronze and Gold Medal games. This playing format will also bring a better understanding about the current playing level post pandemic in these countries.
Within only 10 months, this will be the third IIHF event organized in the Thailand International Ice Hockey Arena in Bangkok which opened about one year ago. The potential of ice hockey in Thailand is also mirrored with another ice rink coming up and expected to open in July 2023 in Chiang Mai, located about 700 km north of Bangkok.
“I would like to thank the Ice Hockey Association of Thailand for their hard work and preparation to welcome all teams in Thailand. We hope that this event will be used to further inspire the next generation of girls to enter the sport and in general to boost the development of Women’s Ice Hockey in the Asia/Oceania region as a whole” said IIHF Regional Vice-President for Asia and Oceania, Aivaz Omorkanov.
The event starts on Sunday, 30 April 2023 and will last until 8 May 2023. All information including livestreams can be found on iihf.com