WC hockey | MS goes to 112 percent! The championship in the Czech Republic is attacking to break its own audience record


“The first weekend was fantastic in terms of attendance. We greatly appreciate all the positive reactions to the atmosphere in the hall or during the pre-match program in the official fan zones,” says Jan Kuklík, PR manager of the championship.

The key is that attendance does not oscillate, it maintains a solid median. Example? Nine years ago, after the opening weekend, the lowest attendance was at the match between Belarus and Slovenia in Ostrava (5,995 spectators), now the lowest number is 8,425 people at the match between Sweden and Poland on Sunday.

And in Prague, the difference is even more striking, because while in 2015 the fewest spectators came to the start of the Sunday evening duel between Switzerland and France (8,780), now 13,512 spectators arrived at the same time for Switzerland and Austria. This is also why the average attendance so far is 12,541 spectators, nine years ago it was 11,154 after the opening weekend and 11,589 spectators overall after the entire championship.

And it should be added that the final weekend takes place only in Prague.

The capacity of both arenas increased slightly, while nine years ago the maximum number of spectators in the O2 Arena was 17,383, now it is 30 people more. In the Ostrava hall, the maximum number of spectators rose from 8,812 to 9,109, and the first six out of eight matches there were completely sold out. “Compared to 2015, the requirements and specific blocks for television studios, commentator positions or the number of seats in the media tribune have changed. Therefore, the total number of the capacity of both arenas has increased,” explains Kuklík.

WC in hockey 2024

The 87th World Ice Hockey Championship is taking place in the term 10-26 May 2024 in the Czech Republic, the tournament is hosted by the cities of Prague and Ostrava.

For some of the sold-out matches in Ostrava, there were empty seats in the arena, but there is an explanation for this. “Either the fans bought tickets in a package or even individual tickets, but something came up and they couldn’t arrive. Another variant could be that they are in the bowels of the hall or at the refreshment stands, which are always full, or in the toilet,” explains Irena Šašková, deputy president of the Ostrava organizing committee.

But the crucial days for the audience record are coming now. There are still hundreds of free tickets for the Tuesday and Thursday matches, when the Czechs are not playing in the O2 Arena. On the other hand, for example, on Sundays, when the national team also has a day off, sales portals report sold out.

“The working week is always a bit problematic, not all afternoon matches are sold out. We offered the option to all schools and hockey clubs for less attractive matches. The total number of visitors is still a big unknown, we don’t know who will advance to the quarter finals and the final weekend. We believe that those fans who do not yet have a ticket and saw full arenas during the weekend will choose to attend any World Cup match. The atmosphere in all the duels was great and it will be no different during the following matches as well,” believes Kuklík.

There are also optimists in Ostrava. For example, tickets for matches between Slovakia and the USA or Poland were sold in record time.

So will the 800,000 mark fall?

The article is in Czech


Tags: hockey percent championship Czech Republic attacking break audience record


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