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30 January 2019 | in Winter Universiade, Bandy

Russia win Bandy U-19 World Championship

KRASNOYARSK – The home team won the U-19 World Championship at the Yenisei Ice Stadium, as the Bandy test event ahead of the Winter Universiade 2019 came to a close. It was Russia against Sweden in the final and the game lived up to expectations. The other two strongest teams in the fray – Finland and Norway met in the third place play-off, with Finland taking bronze.

The morning programme started with the semi-finals, as Norway put up a good fight but eventually lost 1:4 to Sweden. The second semifinal between Russia and Finland turned out to be a really spectacular match, full of suspense and tense moments. Russia was quick to score two goals which were countered by one from Finland. The Finnish goalkeeper Isak Skog grabbed everyone's attention with his fantastic performance: he fended off two one-on-one strikes and turned aside two 12-metre shots.

 

The Russian team proved to be more effective in attack though and won with a score of 3:1. Artyom Repyakh scored twice, and the third goal was scored by Ilya Bondin.

 

The evening session of the final day opened with the bronze medal play-off between Finland and Norway. At the beginning of the second half, Ola Vigdal from the Norwegian team narrowed the gap to 2:1, but at the end Finland struck two more goals and won 4:1.

The stands of the Yenisei Ice Stadium were packed out for the final between Russia and Sweden. Among the guests were Russia's Minister of Sports Pavel Kolobkov and Governor of Krasnoyarsk Territory, Alexander Uss. Russian players relentlessly attacked the Swedish goal nine times in the first half, while the Scandinavian team did not manage to take advantage of their moments.

 

At the end of the half, the home team goalkeeper Nikita Toporov fended off a 12-meter strike shot by Lucas Widman. The second half was dominated by the Swedish players but Nikita Toporov became a real hero as he helped the home team to a 2:1 win.

 

After the final, Toporov said: “This victory is not only my achievement but that of the entire team, each of us. There were so many spectators in the stands, it was really great, without this support we wouldn't have made it.”

 

“How could I save two penalties?” he added. “I just prayed.”

 

The medal ceremony was attended by Sergey Lomanov, ten-time Bandy world champion and Ambassador of the upcoming Winter Universiade 2019 that will be held in Krasnoyarsk from 2-12 March.