2020 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge cancelled

Another major international hockey tournament will not be taking place this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Hockey Canada announced on Friday afternoon that the 2020 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, which was scheduled for Oct. 31 to Nov. 7 in Charlottetown and Summerside, P.E.I., has been cancelled.

“As some provinces continue to move ahead with phased re-opening, Hockey Canada’s priority remains the health and safety of all participants and the general public,” Hockey Canada said in a prepared statement that was credited to chief executive officer Tom Renney, along with president and chief operating officer Scott Smith.

“We believe the decision to cancel the 2020 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge is the safest decision given the ongoing uncertainty of the pandemic at a local level, as well as the international implications associated with this event.”

Charlottetown and Summerside, who were to have served as event hosts for the first time, will have the opportunity to hold the tournament again in 2021.

Hockey Canada also announced that their virtual summer camp for their Under-17 program will still take place as planned and that they will “continue to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and determine if it is safe to bring together Canada’s national under-17 teams in the fall to compete in a local environment.”

Prince Albert Raiders forward prospect Niall Crocker was among 113 players to earn an invite to the summer camp, which will run from July 19-25.

Friday’s announcement marks the second cancellation of a major event for the 2020-21 hockey season.

The 2020 Hlinka Gretzky Cup, which was going to take place in Edmonton and Red Deer next month, was cancelled back in April.