Swedish hockey girl barred from boys’ match

On Wednesday evening Kim Martin was to have been the first Swedish female ice hockey player to play against a men's team in a competitive match. A perfect sporting end to International Women's Day.

But the Olympic silver medallist’s ground-breaking appearance for Malmö Redhawks against Bofors has been put on ice: Martin’s college in Minnesota has stopped her from playing.

The Redhawks have had a written message from the college saying that they “accept that they gave incorrect information to Kim and Malmö and regret that”.

The college club Minnesota Duluth had previously giving Martin the go-ahead for the game. Now, unmoved by the significance of the occasion, the college has got cold feet.

The problem appears to be that a college player is not allowed to have played in a professional league. Whether or not she is paid for the game is irrelevant.

Having had no clarification either from Minnesota or from the National Collegiate Athletic Association in the US, Malmö Redhawks had no choice but to drop Martin.

“We can’t risk Kim’s future by letting her play when we are not sure of the consequences,” said the club in a statement.

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