Head coach Pete Russell says Great Britain’s five international challenge games in the UK next year will be excellent preparation for the World Championship in Slovakia.

Next May, GB will make their first return to ice hockey’s elite level since 1994 and their training camp will include five top-class international games.

Britain will play KHL side Riga in the Skydome Coventry on Wednesday 6th February 2019.

Russell’s side will face Italy in the Skydome on Friday 19th April and Hungary in Planet Ice Milton Keynes on Sunday 21st April.

Britain beat both sides in last season’s gold-medal campaign in Budapest, including the dramatic game against the hosts when Robert Farmer scored with 10 seconds remaining to secure GB the point they needed for promotion.

Great Britain will play KHL team Torpedo on Saturday 27th April in the Motorpoint Arena Nottingham and at the Fly DSA Arena Sheffield on Sunday 28th April.

Further details, face-off times and ticket information will be announced shortly.

Russell said: “This is great line-up of games and really good preparation for the World Championship.

“The variety of opponents is excellent and is just the sort of games we need ahead of such a huge year for GB.

“The games against Italy and Hungary will bring back memories of when we dared to dream in Budapest.

“The matches against the KHL sides will be fantastic and it will be great to pit our wits against players from one of the top leagues in the world.”

Photo credit: Dean Woolley.