MINSK, 18 May (BelTA) - Minsk and Riga beat Tampere and Helsinki to win the right to host the 2021 IIHF World Ice Hockey Championship. Both cities will host the preliminary round matches while the Belarusian capital will be the venue of the semifinal and medal games, BelTA has learned.
The Belarusian-Latvian bid won 54 votes, against Finland's 53, during the first round of today's secret voting. According to the IIHF rules, a one vote margin requires the second round, during which Minsk and Riga took 55 votes against Finland's 52.
The venue of the 2021 IIHF World Championship in Belarus will be the 15,086-capacity Minsk Arena. In Latvia it will be Arena Riga seating 10,300 people. The tournament will be held on 7-23 May.
Belarus plans to introduce a visa-free entry for the guests of the championship as it did in 2014. Belarus broke the World Championship attendance record in 2014, with a total of 643,435 people attending the matches in Minsk (an average of 10,064 per game). The Latvian capital hosted the IIHF World Championship in 2006.
In 2018 the IIHF World Championship will take place in Denmark (Copenhagen, Herning). The tournament will be hosted by Slovakia (Bratislava, Kosice) in 2019 and Switzerland (Zurich, Lausanne) in 2020.More about Sport