From April 20 to 22 all-or-none ice hockey struggles took place in the ice hall of the Olympic centre «Ventspils» . For the first time an international ice hockey championship «Ventbunkers Cup 2012» was organized.
It was opened by the Ventspils Children and Youth Ice Hockey Club Venta2002/Ventbunkers board chairman Aivis Landmanis and director of the Olympic centre Ventspils Uldis Boitmainis who was also the one to make the first symbolic face-off.
According to Aivis Landmanis, this is already the second year since Ventbunkers has been supporting the Club, and last year it decided to organize a championship for young sportsmen born on 2001.
«We hope this cup becomes an annual tradition, because the least support in Ventspils has so far been for ice hockey, and it is a big burden for parents,» the Club’s board member said.
He added that parents have to take care both for uniforms and equipment, and also pay for training, this is why Ventbunkers‘ support has been so important in recent years. Six teams from Lithuania, Russia, as well as from Riga, Ventspils and Tukums were invited to participate in the championship.
According to members of the Club, the Ventspils team Venta2002/Ventbunkers started a great game and won the Lithuanian Champion Team from Klaipeda Skatas. However, later it was not so easy, because already on Friday evening after only few hours of rest the team had to get back to the playing court and compete with the best of Riga teams Prizma /Pardaugava trained by Latvian ice hockey legend Juris Reps.
The game was exciting, however the Riga team was the one to become the winner and receive the «Ventbunkers Cup»
On the next day Venta2002/Ventbunkers competed with another team form Riga - Perkons and one from Tukums. But on Sunday the Ventspils team lost to the Russian Zapad Rosii from Kaliningrad which finally remained in the second place.
«Our team was an equal competitor, in some episodes we were even better than the powerful Russian team, therefore I would like to praise all boys for their unselfish game, because we really struggled to win this third place in the championship,» trainer of the Ventspils team Normunds Lacis said after the championship.
As the Club’s board member Landmanis said, «the best investments are investments in children, and support from such big companies as Ventbunkers is very important». He emphasized that a similar practice exists also in other countries, for example, in Russia and Belarus. This Cup have also helped the Ventspils team to get invited to a championship in Belarus in autumn this year.