Sheffield Steelers open EIHL series against Nottingham Panthers
Sheffield Steelers will face old rivals Nottingham Panthers in the opening match in next month's EIHL mini series.
Fixtures for the series, taking place in the Covid secured surrounds of Nottingham's ice stadium, were released today.
The tournament is in a "double round-robin" format. Each team will be playing two "home" and two "away" games against the other three.
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Steelers first take on the host Panthers' side, a roster which will include former Arena forward Kieran Brown, at 7pm on Saturday April 3.
The following day Sheffield meet Ryan Finnerty's Manchester Storm side at 2pm.
Steelers' coach Aaron Fox has publicly accepted that Finnerty, who declined first pick in last Monday's player draft to bolster his options further down the list, showed an astute mind in forming his team.
In fact, some fans think Storm will be tournament favourites with Ben Davies, Ben Lake, Josh Batch, Craig Peacock and Doncaster-born Matthew Haywood on their roster.
"They went for the best available for this series," said Fox.
But Steelers will hope to have the likes of Robert Dowd and Brendan Connolly in their line up.
After the opening games, Steelers take on Coventry Blaze on Wednesday (7th), Nottingham (10th), Manchester (11th), Coventry Blaze (13th), Nottingham (16th), Manchester (18th), Coventry (20th),
Coventry (22nd), Nottingham (24th) and Manchester (25th.)
A planned exhibition game between Manchester and Sheffield will no longer take place.