Tigers sign Great Britain forward

Telford Tigers have signed Great Britain international forward Matty Davies.

The 26-year-old was Manchester Storm’s captain in the Elite League last season, scoring seven goals with 31 assists in 56 games.

He will arrive in Shropshire with a lengthy top flight CV under his belt, as well as a spell with the national side in February’s Olympic qualification tournament.

Tigers’ boss Tom Watkins swooped for the former Hull Stingrays star after learning of his availability for next season.

He said: “Any time you can sign a British national team player, who has several good years of Elite League experience and with good numbers, then it’s exciting for the club.

“I’d been looking for a replacement for Dan Davies for some time and had anticipated that being our fifth import signing, but when Matty became available I felt it was something that we had to explore to improve us as team.

“We have a guy who is good on the puck, can make key plays and create offence for himself and others. With the size and speed we already have in the line-up, I felt we needed a skilled guy to compliment what we already have.

Davies’ previous time in the EPL, with Peterborough Phantoms and Swindon Wildcats, saw him amass 128 points in 143 games, while scoring 24 points in 15 GB U20 outings.

Watkins added: “The big thing for me is Matty’s experience of league hockey at all levels, as well as what he’s done at international level. That is what really counts.

“He can be a leader, of course, as he showed at Hull and Manchester, but to have a guy at 26 who is hungry for team success is a very good thing.”

Watkins will now continue his search for a fifth import – albeit with Davies having now bolstered his attacking options.

“I think the biggest thing you look for in a team is balance between offense and defense when recruiting,” Watkins said.

“It’s no secret that I was looking for a skilled left-hand centre to complete our line-up and with Matty coming in, I think I have that guy.

“He can pass the puck at an elite level and contribute to the success of the special teams.

“I also anticipate Matty adding more goals to his game this season, and it is something we have already discussed.”

(Image permission: Mark Ferris)

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