These days, Slovak coach Vladimír Vůjtek is finalising the line-up, in a process he called one of the hardest steps he can imagine, eliminating the players who will not travel to the Czech Republic to participate. So far, he has cut four of them; defenseman Ivan Švarný and forwards Rastislav Dej, Ján Sýkora and Radoslav Tybor. Tomáš Marcinek will not play in Prague and Ostrava – where the World Cup takes place in 2015 – due to injury. Two more Slovaks are to be scrapped from the list by Vůjtek, the SITA newswire wrote.
Forwards Marián Gáborík a Vladimír Dravecký will join the team in preparations on April 28.
The current list of the Slovak team includes: goalkeepers Július Hudáček (Örebro HK, Sweden), Branislav Konrád (Dukla Trenčín, SK), Ján Laco (Barys Astana, Kaz./KHL); backs – Ivan Baranka (Slovan Bratislava), Marek Ďaloga (Sparta Prague, CZ), Dominik Graňák (Fribourg Gottéron, Switzerland), Adam Jánošík (HC Košice), Christián Jaroš (Luleaa HF, Sweden), Milan Jurčina (Dinamo Riga, Lithuania/KHL), Andrej Meszároš (Buffalo Sabres, USA/NHL), Juraj Mikuš (Sparta Prague, CZ), Michal Sersen (Slovan Bratislava); and forwards – Milan Bartovič (Slovan Bratislava), Mário Bližňák (HC Škoda Pilsen, CZ), Marko Daňo (Columbus Blue Jackets, USA/NHL), Vladimír Dravecký (HC Oceláři Třinec, CZ), Marián Gáborík (Los Angeles Kings, USA/NHL), Marcel Haščák (Amur Chabarovsk, Russia/KHL), Libor Hudáček (Slovan Bratislava), Tomáš Kopecký (Florida Panthers, USA/NHL), Patrik Lušňák (Junosť Minsk, Belarus), Michel Miklík (Amur Chabarovsk, Russia/KHL), Ladislav Nagy (Slovan Bratislava), Richard Pánik (Toronto Maple Leafs, Canada/NHL), Martin Réway (Sparta Prague, CZ), Tomáš Surový (Slovan Bratislava/HC ‘05 Banská Bystrica), Marek Viedenský (HKP Hämeenlinna, Finland).
Vůjtek is optimistic as for the prospects: “I consider his year’s team stronger than last year’s,” he said, as quoted by the Sme daily. In 2014, The Slovak team lost in the quarter finals at the World Cup in Minsk, Belarus. Their last big success was in 2012, when they won the silver medal in Helsinki, Finland. This time round, the team will be weaker in that not all NHL players can fly in time to participate.
27. Apr 2015 at 13:40 | Compiled by Spectator staff