KISIL REFLECTS ON “AMAZING” WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP ADVENTURE

Ice Hockey UK official Ilya Kisil has been reflecting on his “amazing” World Championship adventure after officiating in Bulgaria last month.

Kisil, who also was on the line for the Elite League playoff final between Belfast and Cardiff at the weekend, has recently returned from Sofia after working the Under-18 Division III Group A tournament.

“The organisation of a tournament was really good,” he said. “We were provided with everything we needed, so we could focus only on the games. It was really good to watch, work and learn from the other officials.

“We had a great support and tons of feedback from our officiating coach, Peter Beck. Straight after the game he would show some clips, ask our opinion on that situation while it is still fresh in memory and provide feedback.

“On top of that, each day in a morning we would start with watching clips from previous gameday and a quick discussion about those situations.

“Everyone from the crew was amazing. All of us were from different parts of the world – Europe, USA, New Zealand, China and Malasia – and with different cultural backgrounds.

“But, in a couple of days, it felt like we knew each other for ages, so the championship was filled with fun and laughter.

“I would also like to thank everyone from our crew and organising committee for a great championship.”

Ice Hockey UK referee-in-chief, Joy Johnston, said: “I would like to congratulate Ilya on his tournament.

“It is fantastic that we have so many officials attending IIHF tournaments and it shows how highly regarded they are.

“This is a particularly busy time of the year where we currently have officials all over the world.”

The six-team tournament consisted of hosts Bulgaria, alongside Iceland, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand and Turkey.

Bulgaria won gold on home ice and promotion to Division II Group B with five wins from their five matches.