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Hamilton bids to host women’s world hockey

By Kevin Werner, News Staff

As Stoney Creek is preparing to host the Esso Cup later this weekend, Hamilton politicians want to the city to bid on preparing for a world female hockey championship event.

Hamilton councillors agreed at their April 16 general issues committee to submit a bid to the Ontario Women’s Hockey Association to host the 2016 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship.

“It is exciting,” said Ward 2 councillor Jason Farr, who introduced the motion. “Hamilton in a few short years could have the best of women’s hockey (in the city). We are short-listed. We have a very good chance (of hosting the event).”

The last time the event was in Canada was when Ottawa last year hosted it where it attracted a record crowd of over 150,400 people. It generated about $3 million in revenue to the city.

The Ontario Women’s Hockey Association has identified Hamilton as its preferred location to host the event. It is preparing a bid to Hockey Canada.

The 2014 World Women’s Championships is being held in the Czech Republic next month.

The city is providing $25,000 to the OWHA organizing committee. In addition, another $50,000 of in-kind contributions will be provided to the organization by the city, said Farr. The event would use the renamed FirstOntario Centre, and other city facilities for 21 tournament games.

Meanwhile, the Esso Cup, which is the national midget championship, will begin play at the Gateway Arena on the South Service Road, off Fruitland Road on Sunday. The games continue until April 26 where the championship contest will be televised by TSN.

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