BRATISLAVA, May 18. /TASS/. Russia booked their spot in the 2019 IIHF World Championship knockout stage in advance after securing a 3-1 victory against Latvia in the preliminary round game in Bratislava on Saturday
The match was watched by 9,084 fans. Dmitry Orlov scored in the 21st minute, while Nikita Gusev (24) and Nikita Kucherov (33) secured Russia’s lead. Oscars Cibu·skis scored for Latvia in the 11th minute.
The national team of Russia made it through to the quarterfinals of the 2019 IINF World Championships in advance. Ice hockey players led by Ilya Vorobyev won in five group stage matches scoring 15 points. As just four teams can reach the knockout stage, Russia is nine points ahead of Latvia, ranked fifth in Group B, two games prior to the end of the preliminary group round. Therefore, Russia will not move lower than fourth place. Russia’s win helped Switzerland and the Czech Republic book their spots in the knockout stage as well.
The 2019 IIHF World Championship is hosted by Slovakia between May 10 and 26. The participating teams were divided into Groups A and B. Group A is playing matches in Slovakia’s Kosice and includes hosts Slovakia, Canada, the United States, Finland, Germany, Denmark, France and Great Britain.
Group B is playing matches in Bratislava and enlists teams from Sweden, Russia, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Norway, Latvia, Austria and Italy.
Russia currently tops its Group B with 12 points while Latvia is ranked 5th with six points.
Slovakia offers two venues for hosting matches of the championship and they are the country’s capital of Bratislava and the country’s second largest city of Kosice. Each city hosts 28 matches of the group stage as well as two quarterfinals.