On Sunday, April 28, 2019, International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) World Championship Division III that run in the Winter Sports Palace complex, ended in the Bulgarian capital Sofia.
In the first match of the tournament, in persistent struggle, the national team of Turkmenistan lost a 4: 5 to the team from Taiwan as the last goal was scored in overtime period. Then there was a convincing victory a 7: 2 over the South African hockey team and defeat from the Bulgarian national team, the favorite of the division. The Turkmen team responded with two goals only against six pucks of hockey players from the Balkan Peninsula.
After beautiful victory over the national team of Luxembourg, the Turkmen hockey squad met on the ice with a team from Turkey. In fact, it was a silver match, as it became known the day before that the first place in the group that gives the right to be promoted in the class and enter Division II, was “reserved” by the Bulgarian team. Thus, needless to say, the ice hockey players from Turkmenistan came out on the ice with a proper mood and serious motivation to win.
It was immediately paid off. In the first period, Begench Dovletmuradov scored the only goal for Turkmenistan (assisted by Alexander Vahovskiy and Ishan Veleyev). Until the end of the period started, the score has remained same.
In the 25th minute of the match, in the second period of the game, the Turkish team equalized the score. Then the Turkmen team being in the majority scored the second goal – 2: 1 as Dovletmuradov made a double. The advantage did not last long and again draw. The result of the period – 2: 2.
The whole third period of the game resembled a kind of “swing”. Firstly, the Turkish team scored again, but soon after Vahovskiy scored for Turkmenistan and equalize the game, and again, Pavel Barkovskiy scored for Turkmenistan to give a lead to the Turkmen team – 4: 3.
But alas … First, in the 54th minute, taking advantage of the expulsions of the Turkmen hockey players, and then, in the 56th minute, the team from Turkey scored two goals. The final score of the match shown on the scoreboard is 5-4 in favor of the Turkish team.
Thus, the national ice hockey team of Turkmenistan took third place in the group in its World Championship Division III debut. It is the case when the “bronze” is equivalent to victory – those dedication and strength of spirit with which the hockey squad was played on the ice cost much. There is a huge progress in the game of hockey players and in the variations of tactical construction of the match that was vividly seen.
Next year, our hockey players will again compete to earn promotion to Division II with the teams of Turkey, Luxembourg, Taiwan, the United Arab Emirates and the DPRK.