More than 330,000 viewers in Tampere and Riga
by Organizing Committee|23 MAY 2023
Heikki Hietanen talking to the press
Soon the preliminary round of the 2023 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship will come to an end, and the playoffs will begin on Thursday.

The atmosphere at the 2023 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship will intensify when the last preliminary round games are played in Tampere and Riga on Tuesday. There is much at stake during these games, as the final list of qualified teams will not be known until after the last games. This marks the beginning of a tight two-day squeeze for the Organizing Committees," says General Secretary Heikki Hietanen.

” With charters, we’ll move the teams to the right place, and make sure that it goes smoothly, without burdening the players. We’ll get the changing rooms, other facilities, hotels ready. The next two days will be a tough effort for both venues.”

The quarter-finals will be played in Tampere and Riga on Thursday, but after this the games will continue in Tampere.

By Monday, Nokia Arena and Arena Riga have attracted more than 330,000 spectators during the preliminary series. Hietanen is pleased with the number, and he praises the great atmosphere brought by the hockey fans in both locations.

” I have to praise these hockey fans. They have brought good vibes in both locations. Are happy and they have come to enjoy the games. We will certainly see the same feeling in the future.”

The Official Fan Zones in both locations are also a source of joy. The record for visitors to last year's Ice Hockey World Championship Official Fan Zone was broken in Tampere on the first Saturday of the 2023 IIHF WM on 13 May. There were over 12,000 people. There have been plenty of hockey fans in Riga as well.

” I was visiting Riga over the weekend and there were also over 10,000 people in the Official Fan Zone”.

The 2023 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship culminates this weekend with the final games. Hietanen is pleased with how the cooperation between the Finnish and Latvian Organizing Committees has worked.

” We only had 10 months to do the tournament together, and I think we have done an excellent job. There have been enough people and good things going in both locations,” Hietanen praises.