July 4: The Vysshaya Khokkeynaya Liga (VHL) Hockey League, the second highest level of Russian hockey, have jointly launched a new hockey league with the China International Cultural Communication Center. This new international league is to be called The Silk Road Cup SHL (SHL) with the main purpose of promoting the sport of ice hockey in China and enhancing communication between countries involved in the One Belt, One Road initiative, the Chinese government’s program to build trade routes along the ancient Silk Road.
The first edition of the SHL commencing with the 2018-19 season, will see ice hockey teams from countries involved in the One Belt, One Road initiative such as China, Russia and Kazakhstan compete in this new league. It is also expected that 8 to 10 Chinese ice hockey clubs will join the SHL prior to the 2022 Beijing Olympic Winter Games.
Further to this announcement it was also reported that an ice hockey team from Jilin, Jilin City Chengtou Ice Hockey Club, would join the VHL in 2017. Following HC Heilongjiang Kunlun Red Star, Jilin ice hockey club will become the second Chinese ice hockey team to compete in the VHL.
Source: Yutang Sports
Proofread by Raymond Fitzpatrick