Twenty-one hockey players, who took part in the women’s national team’s progress to the Olympic Games in November, coached coach Pac Pacina in the final nomination for the February tournament in Beijing. The bronze Olympic speed skating medalist Karolína Erbanová and Andrea Trnková did not fit into the squad, and Tereza Vanišová and Michaela Pejzová are returning to the team.
Vanišová did not play in the qualifying tournament in Chomutov due to a club-level penalty, Pejzová was injured.
“It was a long, long, long journey for the Czech Republic and for Czech women’s hockey to get to the Olympics. And for the girls too. The journey that started in small clubs in the Czech Republic and the journeys went mostly through America, Sweden, Finland, where the girls played “When we finally made it to the Olympics, which makes us very happy,” Pacina said.
The coach realizes that many hockey players are now sad that they did not make the selection. “We feel joy, but also sadness for those who can’t be there. But that’s part of the sport,” he said.
Pacina, with his assistants Jiří Vozák and Jakub Peslar, placed three goalkeepers, seven defenders and thirteen forwards in the twenty-three-member team. It also includes support for Klára Peslarová, Denisa Křížová, Kateřina Mrázová, Alena Mills and Vanišová. The highest number of players – eleven – is active in Sweden’s highest competition.
“We would like the girls to be able to prepare for the Olympics carefree. No fear. But unfortunately the global situation is such that there is covid and measures, testing and vaccinations, so no one is sure that he will eventually go to the Olympics,” Pacina warned. .
“I think a lot of girls are experiencing worries, fears and stress. Unfortunately, today is basically that only measures and illness are addressed. Not sports and the joy of sports, which should be at the Olympics,” the coach added.
The Czech team management is also preparing for anti-coronavirus measures and possible problems with positively tested players. In addition to the nomination, for example, eleven substitutes are also appointed.
“We are insecure. Every day we deal with various possibilities that can arise, and there are thousands of them. We would like to focus on sports and our performance, but the situation does not allow us. “What can we influence ourselves. For example, to have substitutes ready if someone drops out of the basic set,” said Pacina.
Compared to the last nomination for the Olympic qualification, the coaching team made two changes. There is no doubt that Vanišová and Pejzlová returned to the squad.
“Míša and Tereza have been members of the national team for a long time. They are constantly confirming their nominations at all events. I am aware that it is a great disappointment for the girls who do not go to the Olympics, but they are deserved there,” said the national team coach.
He added that Erban, for example, is one of the first substitutes. “Which we consider a success for her. She got further than we expected. The players in front of her are deserved there,” Pacina repeated.
The Czech national team will meet for final training on Monday, January 24 in Prague, and will fly to Beijing three days later. Before the start of the Olympic Games, they will play two unofficial preparatory matches with Russia and Sweden. Coach Torina’s charge will enter the tournament on February 3 with a match against the home team of China, and in Group B they will play against Sweden, Denmark and Japan. The three best teams will advance to the playoffs, in which they will complete five teams from the elite group A.
Goalkeepers: Klára Peslarová, Viktorie Švejdová (both MODO / Sweden), Kateřina Zechovská (Bílina).
Defender: Sara Cajanova (Valasske Mezirici), Pavlina Horalkova (Krasnoyarsk / Rus.), Aneta Tejralova (Nizhny Novgorod / Rus.), Samantha Kolowratova (Brynas / Sweden), Daniela Pejsova (MODO / Sweden), Tereza Radova (Gothenburg / Sweden) .), Dominika Lásková (Merrimack College / USA).
Assailant: Denisa Křížová, Kateřina Mrázová (both Brynäs / Sweden), Natálie Mlýnková, Kristýna Pátková (both Vermont University / USA), Aneta Lédlová (Kadaň), Kateřina Bukolská, Tereza Vanišová (both Leksand / Sweden), Vendula Přibylová (AIK Stockholm / Lenka), Lenka Serdar (Linköping / Sweden), Alena Mills (Vanke Rays / Rus.), Michaela Pejzová (IFK Helsinki / Fin.), Klára Hymlarová (St. Cloud State University / USA), Noemi Neubauerová (Colgate University / USA).