Davey Phillips hoping skill of former Steelers team-mate will help in absence of Robert Dowd for Great Britain game

Davey Phillips hopes the goal-skills of a former Steelers' team-mate will go some way towards off-setting the absence of a current Sheffield colleague, this weekend.

Wednesday, 5th February 2020, 1:01 pm
Updated Thursday, 19th March 2020, 10:04 am
Robert Dowd fine action shot by Dean Woolley

Injured Robert Dowd is out of the Great Britain roster for their Olympic qualifying tournament with a serious shoulder issue.

His goals and work ethic will be sorely missed as Pete Russell's men compete against Romania (Thurs), Estonia (Sat) and Hungary (Sun.)

But defenceman Phillips is more than aware of the form Luke Ferrara has been displaying at Coventry Blaze: 44 points in 39 games.

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The Steeler recognises the 26-year-old forward is at the peak of his game this season.

"Hopefully he can carry it on," said Phillips.

"He seems full of confidence. He is bagging lots of goals, everything seems to be going in for him at the minute.

“And good for him, because he is a great kid."

Dowd's absence was potentially a "massive loss" for Britain, admitted the Steeler.

"He always steps up for GB - you know what you are always going to get with Dowdy but with Luke having a great season as well hopefully guys like him can step in."

Phillips is looking forward to the international break from EIHL hockey.

"It is always nice to meet up with the GB guys, a good group of guys, coming off our success last year in Pool A, staying up," he added.

Luke Ferrera

The skater said players might be tired from their domestic exertions but they looked forward to any GB involvement.

Hungary, on paper, present the most obvious threat.

"We have had some good games against them recently. We are evenly matched up."

The two nations were very close in the rankings although GB had got the better of them in the last game or two, he said.

Davey Phillips in GB training gear. Photo - Dean Woolley

"We have got to win the first two games first though."

GB will presumably have Swinton's Cardiff Devil Ben Bowns in goal, but Phillips says they could rely on Jackson Whistle if called upon.

"He's a good goalie. It's been tough for him to get some minutes with Bownsy playing good, as well, so I am not sure who they are going to go with.

"But we are confident in 'Wis' too."

Every GB game at Nottingham will be shown live on FreeSports TV channel.