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Switzerland drops 2019 IIHF World Championship bid to focus on 2020 event

The Swiss Ice Hockey Federation (SIHF) has submitted a bid to host the 2020 International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) World Championship, leaving Slovakia in pole position to secure the 2019 event.

In the Swiss proposal, which is being supported by the Infront Sports & Media agency during the candidature phase, Zurich’s Hallenstadion would serve as the main venue, with Lausanne or Zug as potential second venues.

The 2020 IIHF World Championship will be a three-week tournament taking place in April/May 2020. Switzerland last staged the event in Berne and Kloten in 2009 and the SIHF will work alongside Infront to manage the national organisation and marketing of the 2020 tournament if it wins the approval of the IIHF.

In September last year, the IIHF announced it had received a bid from Switzerland along with Slovakia to stage the 2019 World Championship, although the SIHF has withdrawn that proposal in favour of its pitch for 2020.

A decision on the host of the 2020 World Championship will be made at the global governing body’s Congress in Prague this May. The IIHF said the final bid venues for the 2019 World Championship will be named in the upcoming weeks.

The congress takes place alongside Prague and Ostrava hosting the 2015 World Championship in the Czech Republic. The event heads to Russia in Moscow and St Petersburg in 2016, while Paris, France and Cologne, Germany are joint hosts in 2017. The Danish cities of Copenhagen and Herning welcome the tournament in 2018.