Watkins wonâ€™t rush in import chase
Tigers coach Tom Watkins will play a waiting game before settling on a potentially crucial fifth import for the new English Premier League season.
Watkinsâ€™ summer overhaul of his squad is virtually complete, with newcomers Ondrej Raszka, Doug Clarkson and Michal Satek having already signed.
But with EPL teams allowed an extra import for next year, the Tigers chief is still on the lookout for a final addition to his line-up.
He said: â€œIâ€™ve been talking to some quality guys and a few offers have gone out, but at this stage of the summer itâ€™s a case of time will tell.
â€œThere is still over a month to go until pre-season and now is the time that guys tend to drop down the leagues, so there is a natural filter effect.
â€œPlayers get to a point where they know they need a job, which can lead to them coming to the EPL. We have to make sure this is a good place for guys to play.
â€œThere is no point in jumping on the wrong guy just because he is available. We would only end up regretting that.â€
Watkinsâ€™ typically scientific approach to squad building means he has identified a specific skillset for any new import – albeit with a caveat for flexibility.
He added: â€œMost of the other teams are finished with their line-ups from what I hear, even if they havenâ€™t announced them yet.
â€œI am being quite particular in what I want. Iâ€™m looking for a left-handed centreman who is good at face-offs and can play big minutes in key situations.
â€œBut he has got to contribute at both ends of the ice and most importantly, buy into what we want to do.â€
Those summer changes included the departure of forward Peter Szabo, who scored a mammoth 159 points during his two seasons in Telford.
The Slovakian was a late capture in 2014, ahead of a season when the Tigers went on to dominate both the EPL and British Challenge Cup.
â€œI am asking a lot and that is probably why it can get hard to find the right guy,â€ Watkins said.
â€œYou just have to use Peter Szabo as an example. We signed him just a week before pre-season a few years ago and what a great player he turned out to be.
â€œBy taking our time, I think we can bring in someone who could make a real difference for us next season.â€