Ice hockey championships without China? – “Unbridled defeat is the loss of face” – Sports

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Discussions are currently underway over whether the Chinese national ice hockey team will be disqualified from the Winter Games at home. for reasons.

At the end of September, it became known that the IIHF was considering holding the Olympic ice hockey tournament without the host China. This is despite the fact that the Chinese will already be set for the Winter Games in February 2022. The reason: poor athleticism.

“Ice hockey is still a niche sport in China – despite huge investments by the government, that hasn’t changed,” says Martin Aldrovandi, SRF’s China correspondent.

What’s hard to catch up with is the game’s culture.

Marcus Graf shows that a lot is possible in the technical field with a lot of diligence and discipline. The problem is different, as Swiss Ice Hockey’s Head of Training explains: “What’s hard to catch is the culture of the game – understanding the game, being creative, reading the game.” It takes years to reach this high level.

First-class opponents to the number 32 in the world

China is currently ranked 32nd in the world – therefore it is in the region of Spain, Australia or Israel. The competitors in Group A next February are the United States (No. 4), Canada (No. 1) and Germany (No. 5).

Defeat seems inevitable. And this is a problem in China, where national pride is not small, says Aldrovandi: “If the Chinese team loses a big loss to the United States or Canada, it will be embarrassing, it will be a loss of face.”

Those who know China go so far as to say that exclusion from the Olympic tournament may be the lesser of two evils. The IIHF wants to decide by the end of October whether or not to allow the host to participate in the Winter Games.

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