A Wild Thank You

The RTL Widnes Wild would like to place on record it’s thanks to George Crawshaw, Calum Ruddick, Ben Brown and Ian “Budgie” Thirkettle all of whom played for the Wild last season but who will not be returning.

Budgie has used the opportunity to train and play with the Wild to secure himself a spot on the roster of one of the Wild opponents next season and as a club we wish him well for next season, although clearly not against us.

Ben started last season with the Wild but found the demands of training and playing for the Wild conflicted with the demands of his new role studying for his Ph. D.  A great servant of the club, both and off the ice, it is with sadness that we have to announce that Ben will not be wearing the number 5 for the Wild next season.

Calum has played his heart out for the Wild over the past three seasons and matured to make a great assistant captain.  Due to a new young family Calum made the decision to retire from hockey, although it is hoped that this is a decision that Calum will reconsider in the future.  Calum’s legacy is that he leads the Wild overall in terms of the number of the number of minutes he’s sat in the penalty box and the penalty box will be emptier without him. 

George is a great young player who has a great future ahead of him.  At the end of last season, the previous Wild coach made it clear to George that he did not want George to return to the Wild, destroying George’s confidence and making him consider giving up ice hockey.  Fortunately, George’s parents and friends persuaded George to continue playing and George signed for a team.  When the coaching situation at the Wild changed in July approaches were made to George however as he had already committed to his new team, he chose to honour the commitment he had made. 

RTL Widnes Wild chair, Matt Lloyd commenting on the departures said,

“I would like to thank Budgie for all he has done for the Wild.  He has made himself available when needed and certainly deserves his chance to play in the NiHL.”

Widnes Wild“It is sad to see Ben go.  Not only was he a great player for the Wild but he did a lot of work for the club behind the scenes and also worked for my company as a consultant.  He is a truly wonderful guy and I hope he achieves all that he wants to achieve”.

“Calum going leaves a strange feeling.  He and Bobby Caunce were the first players to take a chance and sign for the Wild.  Over the years I have come to regard Calum as a friend and I will miss seeing him, Bianca and Lucia around the rink on game days.  I hope that in time he will return to the game that he clearly loves.”

WvHull-19“And finally George.  Over two seasons he has been committed to becoming the best player he could and it is disappointing to know that he won’t be back at the Wild next season.  I know that not only will he be missed but so will his parents who have been dedicated #WildOnes and have supported the team unrelentingly.  Hopefully with the passage of time we will see the three of them back in Widnes”.

The RTL Widnes Wild will be announcing their pre-season games at the end of the week and on Thursday we will be announcing our last signing of the summer.

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