Long-time national team goalie Edgars Masalskis has announced his retirement from the national team after having been a member of the senior national team for 16 years.
“It is time to stop playing for the Latvian national team. It was a true honour for me to represent Latvia all these years. Thanks to all members and fans of the team,” Masalskis wrote in a statement.
The 36-year-old played for Latvia in three Olympic Winter Games (and was on the roster in four Olympics) and in 12 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championships (on the roster in 15 consecutive Worlds). He had his debut in an exhibition game against France in 2000 and played 159 international games.
He reached three times in his careers the quarter-finals at a major tournament – at the 2004 and 2009 Worlds and at the 2014 Olympics.
However, at the recent Final Olympic Qualification on home ice in Riga he was only the third goaltender behind the younger netminders Kristers Gudlevskis and Elvis Merzlikins and didn’t play a single minute. At the event Latvia failed to qualify for the Olympics for the first time since returning to the Olympic stage in 2002.
Masalskis now enters his second season with KHL team Lada Togliatti.