HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA - The Canadian Hockey Association announced Friday morning that the IIHF (International Ice Hockey Federation) had ratified Halifax as the host for the 2003 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship during its General Congress being held in Hannover, Germany.
"We are very excited to see the World Junior Hockey Championship return to Canada," said Bob Nicholson, President of the CHA, from Germany. "Halifax will be a terrific host and we look forward to working with the Host Committee, Hockey Nova Scotia and then Canadian Hockey League in making the 2003 World Juniors the best ever."
Halifax has recently hosted three major events in the city: 2000 Memorial Cup, The Tall Ships in 2001 and the World Figure Skating Championship in 1990. The province of Nova Scotia also hosted the top Under 17 hockey players at the World Under 17 Challenge in Truro and New Glasgow this past winter. Halifax will also play host to the 2002 Royal Bank Cup.
The 2003 World Junior Championship will consist of 34 games, 20 of which will be held in Halifax, with the other 14 to be held in the Atlantic Region. The locations and schedule will be subject to IIHF approval, and will be released at a later date.
"We are elated to receive the final stamp of approval to host the IIHF World Junior Championship in 2003, " said Fred MacGillivray, Chairman of the Halifax Bid Committee. "Even though final approval has only come today, we are overwhelmed with the response we've had, as we have already sold over 7000 ticket packages."
Tickets are still available for games in Halifax. To access ticket information, visit the CHA's official website at www.canadianhockey.ca
"Hockey Nova Scotia is thrilled today as we receive official word that the World Junior Hockey Championship is coming to our province," said Denny Deveau, President, Hockey Nova Scotia, and Co-Chair of the Halifax Bid Committee. "We are also looking forward to the legacy that the World Juniors will bring. This event will be very important for hockey development in not only Nova Scotia, but the entire Atlantic region."
The hosting of the World Junior Championship by Halifax in 2003 will be the sixth time Canada has hosted this event. Other years Canada has hosted were: 1999 (Winnipeg, MB), 1995 (Red Deer, AB), 1991 (Saskatoon, SK), 1986 (Hamilton, ON), 1978 (Montreal, QC).