UK referee Liam Sewell will officiate at this year’s World Championship in Latvia and Finland.

The 32-year-old is part of 32-strong officiating team for the top-level tournament which gets under way in Riga and Tampere this weekend.

The 16 referees and 16 linesmen hail from 12 different nations and the nominations from the IIHF Officiating Committee have been approved by the IIHF Council.

Sewell said: “It’s an honour to be chosen to officiate at the World Championship this year.

“I am very proud to representing UK officials in May and work with some of the top referees and linesmen in the world.

Ice Hockey UK Referee-in-Chief, Simon Kirkham, said: “This is superb recognition for Liam who is an outstanding referee.”

“Liam made history when he spend time officiating in the American Hockey League earlier in his career and he is highly regarded across the world.

“Not only is this great for Liam but for UK officials who don’t really ever get in the spotlight.

“Our officials are constantly coming back from international tournaments with high marks and this is great recogniton for our programme as a whole.”

IIHF Council Member, Marta Zawadzka, who is the Chairperson of the Officiating Committee, said: “Selecting top game officials for an IIHF event is a long-term process.

“Our focus is on transparent co-operation with the federations’ referees-in-chief and evaluation until the very possible end of the respective league playoffs.

“We are very confident that the strong season performance of the selected team of officials will be reflected in the tournament in Riga and Tampere.”