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Monday, 7 October, 2002, 08:36 GMT 09:36 UK
Queen faces off in Canada
Queen in Vancouver
A red carpet was laid out to centre ice
The Queen tapped into the spirit of Canada by ceremonially dropping a puck to signal the start of an ice hockey match before watching a game of the country's favourite sport.

The Royal face-off preceded a National Hockey League pre-season game at an arena in Vancouver.

Her Majesty was saved from any potential slipping accident by a red carpet and was escorted by ice hockey legend Wayne Gretzky.

Thousands cheered as she dropped the puck between the captains of the Vancouver Canucks and San Jose Sharks as she continued her Golden Jubilee tour of the Commonwealth.

The players lined the carpet, banging their sticks on the on the ice as they waited for the game to get under way.

Bryan Adams and the Queen
The Queen met with rocker Bryan Adams
Other distinguished guest who accompanied the Queen included Canucks player Ed Jovanovski, commentator Howie Meeker, and Cassie Campbell, the captain of the Canadian Olympic gold medal women's ice hockey team.

Following a rendition of God Save the Queen, she left the ice to take her seat in the royal box where she sat with British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell.

She sat through the first period of the game before retiring for the evening.

She had earlier been at a reception held in her honour where she met people from all walks of Canadian life including rock star Bryan Adams.

Walkabout

The Queen last attended an ice hockey match in Canada when she was a 25-year-old princess when she watched part of a game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Chicago Blackhawks in 1951.

The same day she and Prince Philip went on to watch another game between the Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers.

The Queen's 10-day visit to Canada marks her final stop on the Golden Jubilee tour, which has seen her travel to every corner of the Commonwealth.

On arriving in Canada she and Prince Philip visited Iqaluit, the capital of Canada's newest territory, Nunavut.

She also attended a church service in Victoria, British Columbia, where she broke from her schedule for an impromptu walkabout to greet the 15,000 people who had gathered outside the church.

Next on the itinerary is a private meeting with Prime Minister Jean Chretien on Monday.

The royal couple will then travel to Winnipeg, Toronto, New Brunswick and Gatineau in Quebec.


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See also:

05 Oct 02 | Americas
07 Aug 02 | Scotland
05 Aug 02 | Scotland
03 Jun 02 | Scotland
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