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Interviews before the World Junior Championship semi-final

04.01.2017

Russia U20 forward Kirill Urakov:

- We didn't sleep a lot after travelling here last night, but we're in a good mood. The Montreal Canadiens' arena? I have never been at such a big stadium before.

- Are you satisfied with your performance against Denmark?

- I am happy that we won. I made mistakes, the coaches will show me exactly where. Pressure? We all have pressure, we're representing our country.

- After playing the USA in the group stages, have you become stronger?

- I think so, we always discuss our performance after every game. My main impressions from Canada? The time difference. Also, all stadiums over here are really big and loud. We always hear Russian fans at our matches, it gives us a nice feeling.

- Russia's 2011 World Junior Championship winning team made a special video for you.

- It was great to hear support from the guys. They made a great comeback for their final win over Canada, it gives us confidence that we can do the same.

Russia U20 defenseman Mikhail Sergachyov:

- I had a great time in Montreal, it's nice to return here. However, I have never been in the away team's section of the arena before. During the two months that I spent here, I noticed how the fans support their team. I'm ready.

- Will Montreal's fans support you tomorrow? You are a player of their system.

- I hope so! Also, I think that Russians in Montreal will come to the stadium and give us their support.

- Your expectations from tomorrow's game?

- I think that America will come out hard, they often do. They will try and pin us in our own zone. We have to move out from the zone quickly, shoot more and punish them for their mistakes.

- Is the team better prepared for the USA than in the group stages?

- Of course, we're improving with every game. We have got better in defence and on the penalty kill. We're scoring more goals, we're understanding each other better and better. Am I satisfied with my own performances? I play for the team. That includes blocking shots, playing on the penalty kill. Usually, I am more of an attacking player, but when I have the chance, I join the rush. When at the blue line, if I can't shoot, I will try and skate around my opponent.

Russian Ice Hockey Federation 

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