By James Crook

155701954April 24 - Team leaders and athletes currently competing at the Ice Hockey Under-18 World Championships in Sochi have praised facilities and accommodation in the city.

Shawn Bullock, leader of the Canadian team, said: "It's a fantastic facility, amazing, very clean hotel, incredible amenities there when it comes to work out: gyms, pool, tennis centre, bowling alley.

"Really amazing hotel.

"Again, the people are very friendly, accommodating to meet any of our needs."

Russian general manager Boris Dlugach echoed these sentiments, saying: "I have been to several World Championships and I can assure you that the conditions here, for guys of this age, are absolutely remarkable.

"The restaurant is open literally round-the-clock, the catering is wonderful, and as for the open buffet - what more can I say.

"Everyone's happy with the service, including the foreign teams - you can see that by how often they like to come in and eat here.

"The conditions in the hotel are fantastic - there's a great sports and fitness gym, an outstanding pool, and in general the hotel's grounds are really well-kept."

166974565Russian President Vladimir Putin was at the Bolshoi Ice Dome to see Russia defeat the USA in the opening fixture of the Championship

Finland team leader Arto Sihvonen said: "It's very comfortable, the rooms are very nice and clean.

"The service in the hotel is excellent, the food is excellent, it's a perfect hotel for us.

"We use the facilities nearby, beside the hotel as well, like the judo and wrestling centre, inside we do our maintenance there."

Russian President Vladimir Putin was in attendance at the opening ceremony of the Championship last week at the $180 million (£115 million/€140 million) Bolshoi Ice Dome, which was built for use at Sochi 2014, and saw Russia's under-18's defeat the United States 4-3 in the first fixture.

The teams at the Ice Hockey Under-18 World Championship are currently preparing for the play-offs following the conclusion of the preliminary rounds.

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