Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Men’s Hockey World League Round One: Russia trounce Bulgaria 11-0, Swiss post second straight win

Russian men’s hockey team lived to their billing in the first Men’s Hockey World League Round One Tournament, clobbering 50th ranked Bulgaria 11-0 at Sveti Ivan Zelina near Zagreb in Croatia.
The 23rd ranked Russians wasted little time to get into the goal-scoring act as Nikolay Yankun converted a penalty corner in the 4th minute of play to dictate terms to their opposition. Dmitry Azarov then stole the show, firing home a short corner as well as converting a penalty stroke before going on to complete a breezy hat-trick close to half-time as Russia led 8-0 at the break.
Nikolay Yankun added his second in the second half while Ilfat Zamalutdinov also notched up a brace. Nikolay Komaraov, Alexander Palyanitsa, Pavel Plesetskiy, Alexey Mayorov scored a goal each to complete the decimation job.
Hosts and 36th ranked Switzerland riding high after their opening 11-0 win over Bulgaria, chalked up their second win on the trot, crushing 39th ranked Turkey 7-1. It was Turkey’s second loss after they went down tamely 1-6 to Croatia.

It may be noted that teams with rankings higher than 20 compete in HWL Round One for the right to compete in Round Two events. The Round Two competitors have a ranking from 11 to 19 will earn the right to compete in Round Three – the level of competition at which the lower-ranked teams enter the contest.
The winners of Round Three reach the Final Round and will contest the right to play at the 2016 Rio Olympics. The top six or seven teams from the Hockey World League will qualify for the Olympics alongside each continental champion.

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