The first game of the 2016 Gulf Cup Ice Hockey Championships in Doha, Qatar saw Kuwait take a very easy 17-1 victory over Oman to start the tournament.

The Gulf Cup is a four team event featuring national teams from the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman and Qatar. Held three times previously, UAE pulled away with all three gold medals while Kuwait has been a constant occupant of second. Kuwait, who also plays in the Challenge Cup of Asia with UAE, were expected to come out fighting in this tournament, but probably won’t finish with anything better than a silver.

Their opening game did go rather smoothly, however. The last time Kuwait and Oman opened up the tournament, Kuwait easily took them down 6-0 back in 2014. Kuwait recently earned promotion to the top division of the Challenge Cup of Asia for 2016, leaving Oman behind after a disappointing fourth place finish.

Oman has participated in all three previous Gulf Cup tournaments, with two victories over Bahrain back in 2012, plus one against eventual bronze medal winners Qatar last year, proving to be their only victories in the event.

Kuwait will play the hosts from Qatar on Friday for the second round robin game, while Oman will bide their luck against the powerhouse team from the Emirates in the earlier game.

Follow me on twitter, @StevenEllisNHL.

About The Author

Steven took a different route towards his hockey interests. Starting out as a big Habs fan, he started to gravitate towards the more obscure levels of hockey, such as the low level tournaments in Asia, strange club matches between teams most people in North America can’t pronounce, and even some 3am contests between Bulgaria and New Zealand. Aside from his love for strange hockey events, Steven occasionally acts as a mediocre ball hockey goalie following a failed attempt at making it to the NHL as a fourth line house league grinder. Beyond hockey, Steven is an avid racing fan and loves to chat about NASCAR, F1, Indycar, you name it. Oh, and don’t get him started on music. That is, unless you want the whole history of metal and a guitar lesson. Currently, Steven is a credentialed media member with the Mississauga Steelheads of the OHL, as well as with the Oakville Blades of the OJHL. Steven has also hosted the television show "The Hockey House" on TVCogeco in Ontario, as well as a segment under the same with on LeafsTV in Toronto. Home page: http://www.thehockeyhouse.net

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