This Week in UK Ice Hockey – 12th November

This week we on our travels and come from the newly refurbished Telford ice rink home to EPL side the Telford Tigers. It is an unbelievable transformation for the rink. It has been completely gutted and is now much brighter and pleasant it will be a very smart arena for the Tigers once fully completed. The atmosphere is nice too very friendly and was perhaps boosted by the news from Japan that Team GB were progressing.

Newly Refurbished Telford Ice Rink

Elsewhere in the UK most of the attention has been on the national team but there has been some interesting talking points domestically as well.

Team GB – The national team are the main talking point this week and so they should. Despite IHUK turning down the opportunity to host the tournament Team GB travelled to Japan and won the pre-Olympic qualification tournament. An penalty shoot out loss to South Korea in the first game was followed by a shutout of Romania in game 2 and a regulation win over Japan in the final game sealed a spot in February’s final qualification round.

It is a massive achievement for Team GB who secures their first major tournament victory since gaining promotion to Division 1 of the World Championships and gives the side a major boost ahead of this season World Championships in Hungary. It also means that the team that has in recent years only met up a few days prior to the World Championships will have 3 more games together.

The only sower note on the victory is that the tournament was not hosted in the UK after IHUK passed on the opportunity as apparently no venue could be found. Hopefully now with prospect of games against bigger nations the EIHL and IHUK will work together to allow national team players to meet up more regularly and play in other tournaments.

GB will now go to Riga in Latvia to play the hosts, France and Kazakhstan for a place at the Olympics in Sochi.

The other major upset in the qualification round was the Netherlands beating their hosts Hungary to progress to the next round.

Social Media Policy Code – That’s right the four words that have become as associated with the EIHL as much as Nottingham sign another import. This week there were 2 offenders that included habitual offender Devin Didiomete and Coventry Blaze forward Brad Leeb. With another week and these violations it does question whether the fines are actually doing their job or not. Didiomete has now been fined for 2 weeks in a row and this is after head of discipline Simon Kirkham sent out a reminder email in October. Surely the EIHL is going to have to give Kirkham more powers on the issue if it is curb the abuses. Either tougher fines or suspensions are going to need to be introduced as it is clear the teams are not doing their part and that some players are using the policy to further there personal image.

Edinburgh Capitals – After picking up only their second victory of the season last weekend against the Cardiff Devils the Capitals defeated the improving Braehead Clan. The Caps in putting 8 past the Clan and will please their faithful as will the score sheet. Goals from Holecko, Cingel, Zemburgs, Hartmann and Jarolin made the score sheet look like a sheet from years ago. The challenge will be to keep this going. On the flipside the Capitals neighbours the Fife Flyers after a superb start in the challenge cup are have now 1 win in 7 that will worry all.

Scores

Wednesday 7th November

EPL

Milton Keynes 3 Slough Jets 2

 

Friday 9th November

Olympic Pre-Qualification Tournament

Great Britain 4 Korea 5 APS

Romania 0 Japan 2

Elite League

Braehead Clan 6 Edinburgh Capitals 1

Saturday 10th November

Olympic Pre-Qualification Tournament

Romania 0 Great Britain 3

Japan 4 Korea 3 AOT

Elite League

Edinburgh Capitals 8 Braehead Clan 4

Hull Stingrays 4 Coventry Blaze 2

Fife Flyers 1 Dundee Stars 2

English Premier League

Manchester Phoenix 7 Peterborough Phantoms 5

Swindon Wildcats 4 Telford Tigers 2

Slough Jets 2 Milton Keynes Lightning 0

Basingstoke Bison 3 Guildford Flames 1

Sheffield Steeldogs 6 Bracknell Bees 3

Sunday 11th November

Olympic Pre-Qualification Tournament

Great Britain 2 Japan 1

Korea 2 Romania 0

Elite League

Coventry Blaze 2 Hull Stingrays 1

Dundee Stars 5 Edinburgh Capitals 4

Cardiff Devils 4 Fife Flyers 0

English Premier League

Telford Tigers 4 Manchester Phoenix 1

Bracknell Bees 4 Slough Jets 5

Guildford Flames 3 Basingstoke Bison 2

Sheffield Steeldogs 2 Milton Keynes Lightning 3 APS

Peterborough Phantoms 4 Swindon Wildcats 3 AOT

Neil Tucker

Neil has written on ice hockey for many websites concentrating on British ice hockey mostly. Neil also covers ice hockey in other countries and organises his Blueliner Hockey Tour. A graduate of the Manchester Metropolitan University Neil turned his hand to hockey writing in 2009. As well as contributing on Blueliner Hockey Neil has contributed to Get Real Hockey and Slapshot Magasine.

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