With the exception of the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship, all lower division tournaments in the men’s U20 category will be cancelled. The 2021 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women’s World Championship will also be cancelled together with all other tournaments in the women’s U18 category.
The IIHF Council followed the Expert Group’s recommendations that cited major concerns over the ability of the event hosts to operate a tournament in a safe environment and without incurring potentially serious financial risks should the tournament be cancelled or a participant fall ill.
“Requiring each tournament hosts to operate a competition “bubble” is not a practical request for our lower-division tournament organizers, many of whom are already stretched financially from the COVID-19 pandemic,” said IIHF President René Fasel. “The IIHF does not have the resources necessary to properly supervise the safe operation of these tournaments, so that the minimum requirements for COVID-19 health and safety can be met.”
Council approves financial support for impacted MNAsFasel added that other financial factors related to testing requirements for incoming players and officials, together with the current travel risks associated with organizing an international ice hockey tournament, could not be absorbed by either the IIHF or by the host organizer.
“By choosing to cancel these tournaments now, we can avoid a situation the tournament organizer needlessly spending money to prepare these tournaments,” said Fasel. “In the bigger picture, the money that would have been used for these tournaments will help the organizers to get through this season, focus on domestic development, and come back next year ready to play international hockey once more.”
Fasel also confirmed that the IIHF Council will look into creating a new COVID-19 Relief Fund, to help support the member national associations that would have organized and/or participated in a men’s U20 or women’s U18 event.
Men’s U18, senior tournaments remain on schedule for springAt present time, the Council decision to cancel these tournaments does not impact the men’s senior and women’s’ senior tournaments including the 2021 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship and the 2021 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship. The 2021 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship and all other men’s U18 tournaments are also unaffected by these cancellations.
The IIHF COVID-19 Expert Group will continue to monitor and evaluate the status of all active tournaments and make reports and recommendations to the IIHF Council.
Olympic Qualification tournaments postponedWith Round 1 of the Women’s Olympic Pre-Qualification scheduled to take place from 17-19 December 2020 in Reykjavik, Iceland, the IIHF Council determined that the Olympic Qualification tournaments will need to be rescheduled and are postponed until further notice.
The Competition and Coordination Committee will work out potential new scenarios when the Women’s Olympic Qualification tournament can take place.
Following the Council decision, the following tournaments will be canceled:
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U20 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION I GROUP A
13-19 December 2020 – DENMARK, Horsholm
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U20 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION I GROUP B
10-17 February 2021 – ESTONIA, Tallinn
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U20 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION II GROUP A
8-14 February 2021 – ROMANIA, Brasov
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U20 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION II GROUP B
8-14 February 2021 – SERBIA, Belgrade
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U20 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION III
11-16 January 2021 – MEXICO, Mexico City
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U18 WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
5-12 January 2021 – Sweden, Linkoping & Mjolby
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U18 WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP Division I Group A
10-16 January 2021 – HUNGARY, Gyor
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U18 WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP Division I Group B
10-16 January 2021 – AUSTRIA, Radenthein
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U18 WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP Division II Group A
19-22 January 2021 – GREAT BRITAIN, Dumfries
2021 IIHF ICE HOCKEY U18 WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP Division II Group B
28-31 January 2021 – TURKEY, Kocaeli