After the second game day, we talked to the head coach of the Ferrum team, Petr Shibaevs. He spoke about the peculiarities of his team, legionnaires and his views on short hockey.
– Do you like the game that team shows at this tournament?
– At this tournament? Young, unpredictable, very good team, but unstable so far. We study, we try to find a tactical pattern, an understanding of how to play effectively, because the level of opponents is very high. There are teams very close to our class, but mostly good, professional players are represented here, the games against which give us invaluable experience. We are trying different nuances of this game, today, if you noticed, we substituted the goalkeeper and played for a whole minute at the end of the match with five players on the ice, and it was so interesting that I forgot that I was a coach and felt like a fan.
– Why did you decide to update the roster with Canadian players?
– Guys from the German league… The main task that we pursue with this action is to unite the youth and experience. One very experienced striker, an experienced defender and an experienced goalkeeper came to us. After playing with Canadians, I would like the guys to understand what real short hockey is and how to be a professional: how to communicate with professionals in the locker room, because it means a lot.
That is why we chose an experienced Canadian as the captain of our team – he is a media person, very easy to communicate, he can always prompt, joke and for the guys this is a new experience, because in Latvia the approach to sport is more serious, similar to Soviet hockey.
It is not customary for the elders to communicate with the young, but here, after meeting the team, the captain invited all the guys to his room in order to get to know the guys better.
The guys now have experience playing with a leader who can lead the team and explain to the guys that they need to play until the end.
– Well, with the field players it is clear, but what can the Canadian goalkeeper teach?
– The most important thing — 2 different goalkeeper schools. If you noticed, the Canadian goalkeeper is not afraid to go out of the net, not afraid to play against opponent.
It is important for me that my goalkeeper (Mark Theor) exchange experience with the Canadian goalkeeper, look after him, learn something. Goalkeepers are always a separate team, they communicate with each other, discuss who will play.
– What are the reasons for such differences in the game and mentality between the players from Latvia and Canada? Education?
I believe, that we are growing a team, and they (Canadians) initially develop a professional – a person who immediately understands what is important to achieve a result.
The point is that there are different coaching approaches. But short hockey is such an international sport that the result is an interesting fusion of different players who do not need to know the language – they understand each other by gestures.
I am a supporter of symbiosis and I think that in the middle of the tournament the team will be much more interesting.
– How difficult is it for the players to get used to the short hockey rules?
– In fact, it is not difficult, but I believe that each team should have a coach in order to have a view from the bench and he can prompt and explain some points.
At the beginning, we thought it would be easy, but it turned out to be not – high pace and dynamics, the player must give all of himself every second on the ice.
I really like it, and I think that this sport has a future: it is spectacular, interesting, and, I think, it can give older and experienced players the opportunity to extend their careers, and young players, on the contrary, make themselves known.
I love it. If possible, I will try to bring the team to other tournaments in the series.
– At the tournament, everyone is talking about the physical fitness of your players. What features in the physical preparation of players do you use for short hockey?
– Some of the guys were not in the mountainous area, I realized in the second training session that we need adaptation. We use peas, experts will understand me, Cooper’s strength test, and that’s all. The game schedule is very tight (every 2 days). I keep Tables of their physical condition.
– Based on your answer – when will your team be in ideal physical condition?
I believe that at the end of the second round we will be showing another hockey and completely another results.
P.S. The conversation took place a day before the organizers of the competition announced that they could not continue the Competition.