The Winter Universiade (World Student Games) will take place between the 29 January and the 8 February in Almaty, Kazakhstan. There are five students from Lund University who will participate, and we have met three of them.
By Tindra Englund Translation by Viktor Jönsson
Usually Carl Edström and Justus Saldeen study civil engineering at LTH, and Victor Anderberg physiotherapy. But during the two coming weeks they trade their studies for the Winter Universiade.
“It feels really cool! Kazakhstan is not a country you go to on vacation. So in my mind, if I don’t go now then I will never go”, says Justus Saldeen.
Team-unity is the best
They have all played ice-hockey since childhood and think that there are a lot of good things about the sport.
“But the team-unity is the most fun”, says Carl Edström.
The players drafted for the Swedish troupe is made up of students from across the country, from Umeå in the north to Lund in the south. This means that they have not even played a training match together. Something they judge to be a disadvantage.
“I think we will go to the finals… I mean we WILL go to the finals. But the Canadians and Russians are a bit frightening. They have had wholly different resources available to them and that makes them very good”, says Justus Saldeen.
Not a lot of culture regarding student sports in Sweden
He speaks about the vast difference between Sweden and Canada. Canada has a certain culture surrounding college hockey which results in that the best players apply for this type of team.
“Unfortunately we don’t have the same type of culture here in Sweden”, says Justus Saldeen.
Even Victor Anderberg and Carl Edström agree that Canada and Russia probably will be tough opponents.
“But I still believe the finals to be fully possible to hope for. You can’t say more before we have done a couple of training matches”, says Victor Anderberg.
A high-class event
In this year’s Winter Universiade a troupe of 52 participants will attend from Sweden, where several of them have international experience from the Olympic Games, World Championships and European Championships.
“We are looking forwards to a high-class event with a lot of professional student athletes. For participants of the Universiade this is a good way to develop one’s proficiency with championships for the future, and hopefully brings home some medals”, says Johanna Olsson, general secretary, Swedish University Sports Federation.
Lund University is represented at the Winter Universiade 2017 by the following participants:
- Ice hockey: Justus Saldeen, Viktor Uvemark Anderberg, Carl Edström, Ola Dahlbom
- Figure skating: Marcus Björk
The Winter Universiade in short
- 2 500 participants from 55 over countries
- 3 000 volunteers
- Eight obligatory games: Alpine skiing, cross country skiing, biathlon, snowboard, curling, ice hockey, figure skating and ice skating.
- This year’s Universiade will also include competitions in freestyle skiing, ski-jumping and Nordic combined.