Yaroslavl (Russia): Russian ice hockey players have volunteered to restore the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl team which almost entirely perished in a plane crash, a source close to the club said Thursday.
The new team would take part in this year`s Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) championship, which was supposed to start on the day of the crash Wednesday, said the source, following a decision at a meeting Thursday morning between the Yaroslavl region governor and the KHL delegation.
The Lokomotiv team, founded in 1949, is one of Russia`s leading hockey teams. It included players and coaches from ten countries.
So far at least 30 players from other clubs, most of whom are former Lokomotiv players or Yaroslavl locals, have volunteered to represent Lokomotiv, the source said.
A Yak-42 chartered by the Lokomotiv team crashed just after takeoff near Yaroslavl Wednesday afternoon, when the team was heading to Belarussian capital Minsk for the season opener against Dinamo Minsk.
All team members but one were killed. Russian player Alexander Galimov is one of the only two survivors but was critical due to severe burns.