By Tom Degun

ice sledge hockey russiaApril 16 - Russia, the United States, Canada and the Czech Republic have all secured qualification for the Sochi 2014 Winter Paralympics after reaching the semi-final of the 2013 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Ice Sledge Hockey World Championships in Goyang, South Korea.

Reigning Paralympic and world champions the US remain the favourites to retain their crown following a 3-0 win over the Czech Republic to take their third straight win at the event following two 7-0 wins over Sweden and Norway.

But despite the loss, the Czech Republic advance to the semi-final following two wins earlier in the event.

Russia will also play in the semi-final after a 1-0 win over Italy, while Canada claimed a 5-0 win meaning that they remain the only unbeaten team at the event other than the US.

The semi-final will now see the US take on Russia and Canada take on the Czech Republic before the two victors meet in the final and the two losers face off in the bronze medal match.

Meanwhile, Italy will face Sweden and Norway will now play South Korea in the consolation bracket, with the four teams fighting it out for the final Sochi 2014 direct qualification spot available at the Championships.

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