The Great Britain Universities women’s team returned to training last week to restart their preparations for the 2021 World University Games.

The IIHF and FISU recently announced the postponement of the Winter Universiade to December 2021 because of the covid-19 pandemic.

Thanks to the hard work from GBU doctor Mike Carmont, along with Ice Hockey UK doctor Matt Robbins, the team were able to take part in a covid-secure training camp at Ice Sheffield last Wednesday.

In line with the latest restrictions, the players took part in two on-ice sessions, as well as a gym session at the English Institute of Sport.

Head of international programme, Ryan Rathbone, said: “It was great to be able to restart part of the Great Britain University programme, getting the players back on the ice and continuing our preparations for the games.

“A special thanks goes out to all those involved in making the camp possible and getting the players back on the ice in a covid-secure environment.”

Assistant captain, Aisling Rafter, said: “It was a great camp after being away from the ice and the girls for months.

“It was clear that many of the girls had been working hard over lockdown on fitness. However, we still have a lot more work to put in.

“With the tempo we played with on Wednesday, I’m excited to see how we use the momentum gained from this camp to push ourselves in the next.

“I would like to give a big thanks to all the coaching staff for the challenging but exhilarating day.”

Rathbone added: “The tempo of the camp was good and the players have been working hard during the lockdown which was great to see.

“There is some more work to be done but we are working towards our plan for the next 12 months and we will continue to build on this as we complete our preparations for the games.”

Both GBU men and women return to Ice Sheffield on Wednesday 6th January 2021.

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