New forwards Martin Kaut and Daniel Voženílek, who were added to the roster on Saturday evening, will be included in the lineup of the Czech hockey players in today’s second match at the World Championship in Riga against Kazakhstan. Forward Filip Chlapík will be absent, who is under the care of doctors after the intervention of Slovakian back Patrik Koch in Friday’s opening duel and was absent from the ice skating.
Out of the four formations, Ondřej Beránek was in the position of thirteenth forward. The duel will start at 19:20 CET.
“Both will go straight into the lineup. We have to react and respect the health of the players. Jirka Smejkal plays with a wired jaw, plays with a full-face mask. Thank God that it turned out the way it did with Jirka Černoch. But anything can happen and we we can’t afford to disrespect this or to speculate in any way,” assistant coach of the Czech team Libor Zábranský told reporters after today’s skating session.
He was relieved that Černoch can continue in the tournament after the knee-on-knee intervention of Mislav Rosandič, and that Smejkal, who has two teeth knocked out and a broken jaw after an unfortunate hit with a hockey stick during training on Thursday, is also playing. With Chlapík, it is not clear when he might be available again. “We go there day after day. He is under the care of a doctor who will decide what condition he will be in and when he will be able to start. We don’t know that now,” said Zábranský.
After Koch’s intervention, which was not judged as illegal in the match, the Czech team filed a complaint with the disciplinary committee, but the current fullback Vítkovic and the new Třince player did not receive additional punishment. “I wouldn’t like to go back to it. I think enough has been said and written about it. It’s already behind us. If it was fair or unfair, Patrik Koch plays like this, we have to take it as it is. It’s a shame, I hope that Filip will get over it soon,” noted Zábranský.
“He’s been incredibly unlucky all season. If we take the story that he got off the bus in Finland and sprained his ankle,” Zábranský recalled how Chlapík was injured in December during the Swiss Games while moving from Helsinki to Friborg.
After today’s duel, the Czech team will have all 22 players in the field at the tournament. “Daniel is a very interesting player, valid in the area in front of the goal and in the corners, he wins a lot of pucks. Martin will definitely bring speed, ferocity, and he is also a right-handed player,” Zábranský said.
The Czech team filled the roster after the apologies of forwards Ondřej Palát from New Jersey and David Kämpf from Toronto. The line-up will be announced just before the match, Zábranský did not comment on it, except for the inclusion of debutants at the big international event, Kauta and Voženielka, including the position of the thirteenth striker. “I would allow myself not to comment on it,” declared Zábranský, who stated that the goalkeepers should alternate, so instead of Šimon Hrubec, one of the Karel Vejmelka pair, Marek Langhamer, should have started.
Kazakhstan entered the tournament on Saturday with a 4-3 win over Norway in separate games. “They play excellently in the defensive zone. They outnumber like most of the team. They have an excellent power play and several individuals. We have to stick to our plan and, above all, be disciplined,” added Zábranský.
The Czech team skated with the following composition: Hrubec, Langhamer, Vejmelka – Kundrátek, Kempný, Košťálek, T. Dvořák, J. Zbořil, Jordán, Knot, Němeček – D. Kubalík, Chytil, Červenka – M. Kaut, M. Špaček, Smejkal – Tomášek, L. Sedlák, Sobotka – D. Voženílek, Černoch, Flek – O. Beránek.
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