World Juniors cancelled amidst COVID-19 concerns

Dec 29 2021, 8:24 pm

The 2022 World Juniors has been cancelled.

“Following a recommendation by the tournament COVID-19 Medical Group and the IIHF Medical Committee, the IIHF Council has decided that, due to the ongoing spread of COVID-19 and the Omicron variant, the 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship will be cancelled to ensure the health and safety of all participants,” the IIHF said in a statement.

The decision came after a positive test from Russia, the fourth such result in two days.

“In addition to ensuring the health and safety of participants, the Council has determined that with another forfeiture ā€“ the third forfeited game in two days ā€“ the sportive integrity of the event has been compromised, and the event must be cancelled,” the statement said.

The tournament’s cancellation was first reported by Chris Peters.

Team USA was forced to forfeit its game against Switzerland yesterday after two players tested positive for COVID. Team Czechia forfeited its game against Finland today, while Russia reportedly will forfeit its game against Slovakia, also because of a positive COVID test result.

ā€œTogether with the teams, we came into this event with full confidence in the COVID-19 protocols put in place by the IIHF, the LOC, Alberta Health, Alberta Health Services and the Public Health Agency of Canada,ā€ IIHF President Luc Tardif said in the release. ā€œThe ongoing spread of COVID-19 and the Omicron variant forced us to readjust our protocols almost immediately upon arrival to attempt to stay ahead of any potential spread. This included daily testing and the team quarantine requirement when positive cases were confirmed.ā€

The IIHF has already cancelled all tournaments in January.Ā 

Ā “Following a recommendation by the IIHF Medical Committee due to recent developments in the global COVID-19 epidemiological situations and the rapid spread of the Omicron variant, the IIHF Council has decided to cancel all IIHF tournaments that were scheduled to begin in January 2022,” the federation said in a release.Ā 

Aaron VickersAaron Vickers

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