We witnessed impressive ratings for the Liga Stavok Big National Team Tour

Dear friends!

The Liga Stavok Big National Team Tour involving Russia 25 and the senior Belarusian national team has finished, a series of matches which provided the fans with plenty of positive emotions and entertainment.

We're all used to watching our national team play in May. One of the Russian Ice Hockey Federation's (RIHF) main tasks was to provide the supporters with the opportunity to see Russia play either with their own eyes or on the television, and we saw during the tour that our games proved to be very popular.

Five of Russia 25's seven matches were contested on home ice. To our delight, the games in Chelyabinsk, Krasnoyarsk and Tula were all sell-outs, with everyone creating a fantastic atmosphere at the arenas.

Governors and ice hockey legends all pointed out that the Russian national team's trip to their respective cities became an historic event. Following the tour's completion, other local governors have submitted a request for Russia to play in their regions next season. The RIHF will certainly consider their proposals.

I am really impressed with the ratings too, with 12 million viewers having watched our games live on television and 82 million having read about our national team in the media. The series captured the attention of the entire Russian ice hockey community!

I also want to point out that Russia 25 displayed an exciting, high-tempo brand of ice hockey which entertained the supporters. Young talented players were included in the team's squad, guys making their maiden steps on the international scene. The next generation of players requires international experience. One of our priorities is to ensure that our players are capable of performing successful in international competitions, and we are doing everything possible to make sure that this is the case. A productive training camp was organised before the tour began.

Furthermore, these games were also important for Belarus. Our close nations are helping each other during these challenging times, and the new Belarusian coaching staff received the opportunity to get to know their players better and gain an understanding of their potential. I am sincerely grateful to our Belarusian colleagues for their cooperation, they were immediately happy to play against our national team. We will stage a similar series next season too.

And, of course, I want to thank our partners without whom it wouldn't have been possible to organise this tour. Thank you to Nornickel and Vladimir Potanin, Gazprom and Alexei Miller, Liga Stavok and Yury Kraskovsky. You can only achieve success in ice hockey if you possess such great partners.

The Liga Stavok Big National Team Tour has already become a part of history. However, the ice hockey process never stops. In the coming days, an international youth tournament will start in Minsk, Belarus. Subsequently, in the summer, we will pay attention to the development of children's ice hockey and will hold development camps.

Thank you for providing our national team with such passionate support during May's tour! We are playing ice hockey for you!

President of the Russian Ice Hockey Federation,

Vladislav Tretiak

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