Great Britain Under-18s took to the ice today for their first camp of the season in covid-secure conditions at Ice Sheffield.
The camp was very different to usual with extensive precautions put in place – led by GB’s covid officer Ian Turner and under-18s team manager Russell Huxted alongside Great Britain doctor Matt Robbins – and included detailed information and advice before and during the day.
Players had to fill in a questionnaire, clean and sanitise all hockey equipment and had their temperature tested on arrival.
A one-way system was in place throughout the building, players were asked to social distance and wear masks at all times off the ice and were given allocated changing rooms.
Head coach, Sean Easton, said: “It was fantastic to be able to get the youngsters onto the ice for the first time this season.
“We are still planning for a World Championship next year, so it was good to be able to get those wheels in motion today.
“Everyone involved deserve great credit for getting the camp on in difficult circumstances. The coaching staff and players took a lot from it and it was brilliant to see everyone out on the ice.”
National Development Head Coach, Tony Hand, said: “It was vital to get this camp on but also important we stayed within the guidelines.
“I would like to thank everyone involved in making this happen as it was important to get the players back on the ice. The backroom staff did a fantastic job and this could well be a blueprint for all ice hockey teams and events going forward.”
The IIHF have cancelled many of their tournaments in late 2020 and early 2021, but no decision has been made yet on the competitions later in the season.
GB Under-18s are set to play in Division II Group A of the U18 World Championship next April in Tallinn. They are scheduled to come up against hosts Estonia, as well as Korea, Lithuania, Romania and Serbia.