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GB face relegation battle at worlds after defeat to Japan

April 19, 2013 18:30 pm

Great Britain need a regulation time win in their last fixture of the Ice Hockey World Championships to avoid relegation after Japan gained revenge on them in Budapest.

Britain defeated Japan 2-1 on their own ice at the Olympic pre-qualifier in November, a result that saw GB win the tournament and keep their hopes of reaching Sochi 2014 alive.

However Japan got their own back on Britain in the Division One Group A clash, running out 4-1 winners to secure their place for next year’s tournament.

Britain meanwhile have now lost four from four in Hungary and need a regulation time win over Korea on Saturday to join Japan in staying in Division One Group A.

Robert Farmer, who scored his first senior goal for Britain in their 5-1 defeat to Italy last time out, netted once again early in the second period in the loss to Japan.

That made it 3-1 with Naoto Mizuuchi, Hiroki Ueno and Yuto Osawa all scoring before then while Shuhei Kuji completed the win little over ten minutes from time.

But assistant coach Doug Christiansen is adamant Britain can do what is required against Korea and avoid relegation to Division One Group B.

“We are disappointed and there is a whole range of emotions in the dressing room right now,” said Christiansen. “We know we did not play well enough.

“Japan were so quick and skilled, they are a very good side. We have to look at the positives and keep everyone’s spirits up.

“GB have been here before so everyone knows what is at stake. It is a massive game tomorrow but we believe we can win.”

© Sportsbeat 2013