The entire hockey community is following the main event in the world of ice sports. The Ice Hockey World Championship is being held loudly and with confetti. Some teams could surprise even the most categorical sceptics. Some teams seem to have forgotten to bring the ability to play hockey and handle the stick correctly.
Today, the national team of Kazakhstan is under the gun. Four matches, four chances to win the championship, and four defeats. What is happening in the team of Yuri Mikhailis? Details in the article.
Kazakhstan national team at the World Cup: a negative scenario has come true
It feels like events are unfolding according to the most boring scenario for the Kazakhstan team. Fans of sportsbooks are at a loss: maybe this first defeat affected the hockey players so much that they waved their sticks wildly, or it’s a villainous fate that does not give Kazakhstan a chance to express itself.
The history of the Kazakhstan national team at the 2022 WC is a tale of unfulfilled hopes. Why?
The very first match with Denmark passed as if Kazakhstan didn’t even participate (1:9). At this rate, the team simply could have not entered the ice, and no one would have missed anything. The game with France, which had high hopes, also ended in a complete fiasco. In a match with the founders of hockey, Canada, the team seemed to perk up and almost overpowered the mastodons of the ice sport. But they didn’t. In the game with Slovakia, Mikhailis’s team had good chances, but the behaviour of one of the players cancelled out the positive outcome.
Almost right after the first defeat, the Kazakh national team was dubbed the main disappointment of the championship. Perhaps the team would have had a chance for revenge, but no one was interested in that. The mood of hockey players depends on the general atmosphere, and the tribunes and experts immediately expressed their dissatisfaction. They had reasons for this: they counted on the team, and the hockey players of the Kazakhstan team had every chance to stay at least in the top four.
What is the reason for the failure?
Darren Dietz replaced by KHL players?
Those who participate in professional betting immediately noticed that the team of Yuri Mikhailis did not initially do things according to plan. Perhaps the lack of the strongest goalkeeper was one of the problems that eventually resulted in a miss.
The national team arrived in Finland without their main star Darren Dietz, who recently won the Gagarin Cup. Apparently, Mikhailis did not sulk and made a smart move by using worthy players of the Continental Hockey League to strengthen the team.
Looks like this is a winning combination. There are all the necessary components for a clear exit in the playoffs. The team gathered a selection of players: Nikita Mikhailis, one of the most sought after in the KHL, Pavel Akolzin, who made it to the final stage of the Gagarin Cup, and Roman Starchenko, a ‘forever young’ man in excellent shape.
Another factor that could have easily influenced the success of Kazakhstan, but for some reason did not do this, is that the big leaders ended up in a different group, so the opponents were supposed to be easy targets. Therefore, the national team’s home country was expecting a triumph and a resounding victory. But this favourable circumstance did not help the team.
While the fans of the Kazakh national team were rehearsing what they would shout to the team when it effectively smashes the Danes and the French, reality painted a different picture.
With each match, there were more and more questions. What happened? The chances of the team breaking through and becoming a leader were disappearing right before our eyes. Usually, the teams provide consistent results. That’s why the humiliating defeat of the Kazakhs in a match with Denmark, perhaps, will not be forgotten for a long time.
Hope for a rematch with Canada
Mikhailis’s team had a chance to erase all the negativity and start playing according to a positive scenario.
The match against Canada could have been a triumph. Although the game ended with a score of 3:6, not in favour of Kazakhstan, they made the Canadians sweat.
Clearly, hockey players are trying to justify themselves and win at least one match. Canada did not expect much pressure from the weak link of the championship, so it obviously seemed weak several times. Andrei Shutov, the goalkeeper, proved to be excellent. He withstood all the attacks of his rivals and did his best not to succumb to the avalanche of pucks that flew like hail from Canada.
The score increased; the Kazakhs cheered up. What if all is not lost yet? But no matter how the hockey players of the Kazakhstan national team tried to cling to a small points advantage, Canada quickly showed who’s boss. The first period ended with the advantage of the Canadian team.
However, Kazakhstan did not give up even after realizing that everything is crumbling down. After allowing Canada to score two more goals, they attacked. The 48th minute brought joy to this ice chaos, as Kazakhstan was leading again.
What chance did Kazakhstan have to win the game? Most importantly, they had that chance. The players could have probably pushed harder or taken their time so that the game would go into overtime. They could have gathered their strength and destroyed one of the strongest and most prestigious opponents. Still, Canada is the country that laid the foundation for hockey. If the weak Kazakhs would have attacked Canada correctly, this sensation would have overshadowed all previous failures. But then the removal of hockey players ruined all plans. This was the last nail that was driven into a coffin of a possible victory for Kazakhstan.
An ambiguous situation has occurred. Seemingly, Kazakhstan was dubbed the biggest disappointment of the tournament. Mikhailis team really keeps repeating mistakes. On the other hand, who can say that the team failed after such a worthy rebuff against Canada?
Local media have already initiated a witch hunt and bullied their own country. However, now, after a decent game with Canada, perhaps the public will change its attitude.