World Cup in Riga – World Cup host Latvia made a spectacular start to the Ice Hockey World Championship with a 2–0 win over Canada. Latvia defeated Canada in the World Cup for the first time.
Half the Swiss player played a key role in Latvia’s surprise win. Ronald Kenins, 30, of HC Lausanne, prepared both 1-0 of Mix Indrasis and 2-0 of Oscar Batna (29th) two seconds before the first break.
What a party Latvian hockey fans would have celebrated in Riga – if they had been allowed to watch in the arena. The empty hall lacked emotion, but memories returned.
Latvia lost to Canada 0:11 in the last World Cup in Riga 15 years ago. Since then, no team has lost so clearly in the domestic World Cup. There were riots of disappointed fans at the time. Then the first brake had to be brought forward; The captain had to call the fans on the microphone so that the game could end normally.
Certainly: Latvian – brilliantly adjusted by Bob Hartley, who won the KHL Championship title in his third season in Omsk this season – has yet to confirm his success against the Canadians. The first chance against Kazakhstan will be on Saturday evening.
And Canada? The young Canadian team, unlike recently renowned NHL Excellencies, did not get the recipe against Latvia a week ago (3–0 and 2–1 win for Switzerland) against Switzerland. For only the second time in the last 15 years, Canada failed to score in a World Cup match. And so Canadians are already under pressure. Canada won at least one medal in four of the last five World Championships, the only one that did not succeed in 2018 (fourth place). Canadians still top the world rankings. Now they have to go to the books for the first time after the first game and before the “derby” against the United States on Sunday evening Pentecost.