The full schedule for the World Championship (Division 1B) tournament at the SSE Arena in Belfast has been confirmed.

The tournament, which is the first men’s World Championship to be held in the UK for nearly 25 years, will run from Sunday 23rd to Saturday 29th April 2017.

GB play their first game of the tournament against Croatia on Sunday 23rd April 2016 at 4pm, with the tournament’s opening game being Netherlands against Japan (12:30pm). Pete Russell’s side beat Croatia 4-1 at last year’s tournament in Zagreb.

The following day, Monday 24th April (7:30pm), GB will take on Estonia, who they beat 4-3 after overtime last year.

After Tuesday’s rest day, GB will come up against Lithuania on Wednesday 26th April (7:30pm). GB have happy memories of last season’s meeting as they skated to an 8-0 victory thanks to eight different goalscorers.

Thursday will be the tournament’s second rest day and GB will then play promoted Netherlands on Friday 28th April at 7:30pm.

Great Britain and Japan, who were relegated from Division 1A last season, will go head-to-head in the tournament’s final game at 7:30pm on Saturday 29th April.

Ice Hockey UK general secretary, Andy French, said: “This is another exciting moment in the build-up to the tournament with the announcement of the schedule.

“A lot of hard work is already going on behind the scenes to make sure this event is a great success.

“This is going to be a massive event for ice hockey in the UK and there is already so much interest in the tournament.”

Click here for a full tournament schedule.

Tickets for the tournament will be on sale shortly.