When the Slovaks took a 2:1 lead, most fans at first did not understand what actually happened, because the goal was not preceded by an extremely dangerous situation. Only repeated footage showed that the Czech goalkeeper Šimon Hrubec basically scored his own goal.
Riga (from our reporter) – Hrubec, Karel Vejmelka, or Marek Langhamer? Before the hockey world championship, there was a lot of discussion about which goalkeeper the Czechs would enter the tournament with.
After much confusion, the choice finally fell on Hrubek, a 31-year-old mainstay of the Swiss club Zurich, who had previously caught at two world championships and one Olympics.
However, in the 11th minute of the opening match against Slovakia, one might wonder if coach Kari Jalonen and mentor Zdenek Orct, the goalkeeper coach, should have put someone else between the posts.
Hrubec first kicked the Slovakian shot and then wanted to hide the puck between the concrete. But he hit it so unluckily that the puck ended up in the goal.
“This has never happened in my life,” the goalkeeper shook his head after the match. “I think I’ve covered tens of thousands of pucks like this, if I count the training sessions. And then this happens…”
“It was an unfortunate situation, I wouldn’t think too much about it,” he continued. “A puck like that is one in a million. Instead of being on the puck, it went up and I smacked it with the hockey stick from above while standing. That’s why it caught a completely different force than I expected. Basically, I shot myself between the legs. I don’t know, though , what I would have done differently. It’s about whether the puck comes to you or not. And it came to me for the first time in my career.”
Look at Hrubc’s mistake during the Slovaks’ second goal:
However, Hrubec did nothing about the unlucky goal. “If I say it stupidly, it doesn’t matter if you get a skylight or a goal like that,” he explained.
Unlike the fans who wondered how the goal was actually scored, he didn’t even watch the replays on the ice cube. “I don’t look at her, no matter what goal I get. I don’t want to mess with it at the moment. There are a lot of shots after the match,” he noted.
He may look at the very special goal, but he certainly won’t read the news and reactions of the public on social networks. “I am now completely out of the media reality, cut off from everything. I know from my own experience that reading social media and news doesn’t help me. If something gets to me, then after the championship. And it won’t matter,” he explained.
It is important for the Czechs that if Hrubce somehow influenced the situation from the 11th minute, it was for the better. Since then, he has not conceded and watched the turn of 1:2 to the final 3:2.
He caught a total of 24 shots and achieved a very respectable save percentage of 92.3. For comparison – Hrubčev’s counterpart Stanislav Škorvánek only got about 86 percent.
“I liked how he kept his concentration,” Czech team coach Kari Jalonen praised Hrubec. “He was excellent after that goal. And as he said himself, this just happens once in a lifetime.”
Jalonen did not even indicate who will go between the posts in Sunday’s game for Kazakhstan. It is certain that the national team will not be strengthened by goalkeeper Vítek Vaněček, whose New Jersey lost to Carolina in the second round of overseas battles for the Stanley Cup. The coaches have already put Hrubek, Vejmelka and Langhamer on the roster. It is from them that the goalkeeper for the crucial quarter-final will emerge.
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