British Ice Hockey

Watkins hopes to reap benefit from break

Tom Watkins hopes Telford Tigers’ extended Christmas break will pay dividends when they travel to MK Lightning on Saturday.

A quirk of the EPL fixture list means Telford have played just once since 18th December, when they beat Manchester Phoenix 10-1 in Blackpool after Christmas.

That break has given Lightning the chance to close the gap to Telford at the top of the standings to six points, while also having a game in hand.

But with his players having now enjoyed a full week of training, Watkins is confident they can benefit from that gap in the schedule.

He said: “I think for the guys both mentally and physically, after what has happened this season, it has been good for them to have some down time.

“Of course, as a club we would have liked some home gates, but the boys have been able to rest and recuperate.

“It has been nice to have the break and we might be a big sluggish to start, but the guys have blown the cobwebs away in training this week.

“We’ve had a couple of sessions together and there is a good feeling amongst the boys. They’re in good spirits.”

The trip to Milton Keynes will see the two sides continue a fascinating season-long battle in the league, that Telford currently lead by three wins to one.

Watkins added: “Games against the Lightning are always good fun for the players and I always enjoy coaching against Pete (Russell).

“There is a very good rivalry between the two sides, so I’m sure there will be some good hockey on show.”

(Image permission: Lucy McGill)

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