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Great Britain fights bravely but is unable to surprise Canada in the opening match of the World Championship

Great Britain fights bravely but is unable to surprise Canada in the opening match of the World Championship

Lake provided the assist for Liam Kirk's opening goal while goalkeeper Whistle, who surprisingly started slightly ahead of long-time No. 1 Ben Bownes, stunned with 30 saves against a truly star-studded Canadian roster.

While in previous years North America has sent watered-down teams to the World Series — which are held during the NHL's Stanley Cup Playoffs and are viewed as less of an Olympics — this year's roster is made up entirely of NHL players.

And it took their star, Chicago Blackhawks forward Connor Bedard, to pull Canada behind the line as last year's first overall NHL draft pick scored twice, with Pittsburgh's Michael Bunting and the Tampa Bay Lightning's Brandon Hagel also on the scoresheet.

Unsurprisingly, it was Kirk, the only British-trained player ever drafted into the NHL, who led most of the offense for Great Britain at the O2 Arena as he scored the first goal of the game and then set up Ben O'Connor for a consolation goal in the period. The third Pete Russell's men will actually win.

But the damage was done in the second half after the first frame ended in a 1-1 draw, with Bedard scoring a brace after Hagel had given Canada the lead to push past Britain and secure the three points for Andre Tourigny's men, who would go on to win. Be one of the favorites to win the tournament.

Kirk gave GB the lead when he scored on his first shot of the game at 7:47, and Lake found Evan Musi who set up the winger to end the power play with Dylan Cousins ​​penalized for high sticking, but Ponting restricted him for exactly 30 seconds. Later when he let out an invisible whistle.

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Hagel would score the go-ahead goal at 5:45 of the second period when he was able to knock in a rebound at the crease and then star Bedard took over, scoring the game-winner at 31:39 and adding another at 35:29 for the insurance.

But head coach Russell will be happy with his players' application that saw them add a consolation goal at 8:49 in the final period, as Kirk overcame an icy call in the offensive zone and found O'Connor skating down the blue line. The defender produced a brilliant touch, beating Joel Hofer – 13 saves – with a backhand kick.

GB even managed to get Whistle out for the extra skate late in the game as they attempted to stage a stunning, stunning comeback, but a tackle call on O'Connor forced them to take a late penalty and allowed Canada to see it out convincingly.

The GB Championship continues with another heavyweight showdown on Sunday when they take on Finland (11.20am UK time), another team that has three NHL players on its roster and plenty of experience in the top European leagues.

They will know there are bigger tests ahead in their bid to avoid relegation from the top flight, although clashes against the likes of Denmark, Norway and Austria later in the tournament are more likely to decide their situation next year than the opening duo. Of games.

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