China motivated

JIM BENDER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 7:10 AM ET

The Chinese will be seeking revenge tonight.

Team China will take on Switzerland in the opening game of the second-group round robin at the MTS Centre at 7:30 p.m.

"I know they have a huge (motivation) because we beat them to qualify for the (2006) Olympics," Swiss captain Kathrin Lehmann said yesterday. "The Chinese never forget and we never forget either. We have a good feeling going into that game and we want to prove our victory over Germany. So we hope we can get into the pole position when we play against Sweden."

The Swiss got into the second group by upsetting the fifth-ranked Germans in their pool.

"We're pretty close, level-wise, and we would be pretty happy if we could win it," said Team China forward Rui Sun. "It's our goal, it's very possible ... We'll try our best but there will be some difficulties."

ADVANCES

The winner of the second group advances to Tuesday's bronze medal match.

"Our team, the Swiss, the German and Kazakhstan are on the same level," said China coach Jorma Siitarinen. "But when we think about the bronze game playing against Sweden, well, they are in the next group."

Although the Swiss reacted to beating the Germans like they had just won gold, that party is on hold.

"The celebrations are over," said Switzerland coach Rene Kammerer. "We've got time for celebrations after the tournament but now it's China the next game.

"The next round is difficult because we had one year to prepare for the first round but just 40 hours for the second one. They will be great games but we are ready for that and we are convinced that we can beat China."

The Swiss were shocked that Sweden, ranked No. 3, dropped into their group.

"That's a big surprise but it shows us that it is possible that we can beat Sweden because we know we can beat the Finnish team," Kammerer said.

ON A HIGH

Switzerland has never beaten the Swedes "but sometime is the first time," Kammerer said.

The Swiss enter the round on a high while the Swedes are on a low.

"Maybe it's good now because maybe they are already satisfied," said Sweden forward Katarina Timglas.

"We played China two years ago when they had jet lag and we won pretty easy," said Sweden coach Peter Elander. "But that was two years ago and they have improved their program. They have a really good Finnish coach (Siitarinen), so they have done much better.

"China, we're a better hockey club (than they are) but we'll have to perform well. Switzerland, we're a better hockey club but we'll have to perform well. So it's not given games but we are the best team in that second group."


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