Hill: Britain can fight for promotion at World Championships
February 15, 2013 15:46 pm
Phil Hill’s participation for the British ice hockey team at April’s World Championship may be in doubt but he believes they can build on their Olympic qualifying experience and achieve promotion.
Hill was part of the British team that missed out on a place at the next year’s Olympics in Sochi following last week’s final qualifying tournament where they lost to Latvia, France and Kazakhstan.
The Cardiff Devils forward suffered a wrist injury in the 4-2 defeat to France and has just had emergency surgery to ease the pressure on a nerve which could yet rule him out beyond April.
That would see him miss the Elite League play-offs in the first weekend of the month with Britain’s trip to Hungary for their World Championship Division One Group A matches following a week later.
Britain face Kazakhstan again as well as the hosts, Italy, Japan and Korea with the winner achieving promotion and Hill is adamant their Olympic qualifying campaign will stand them in good stead.
“Our belief is that we have a good chance of promotion when it comes to the worlds,” said Hill. “The Olympic campaign will help in that quest.
“They were the best experience for every single player and they will really help us going forward. We really enjoyed it and the team came together.
“Despite the defeats, our performances showed we are close to these teams in terms of speed and quality.
“The gap between GB and the leading teams is small and we will keep working to improve.”
© Sportsbeat 2013