Sheffield Steelers signing Sam Jones hoping to get involved in Spring Cup action

Nobody says Sam Jones has had it easy since the coronavirus lockdown froze his chances of playing ice hockey in the UK.
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The Canada-based Sheffield Steelers' signing lost out on the chance of making his debut for the Challenge Cup winners when the 2020-21 EIHL season appeared to be cancelled - although rumours linger that a top flight return is not completely dead in the water.

Finding a place to play seemed a long shot for Jones, though, until the Spring Cup arrived on the English scene and Telford Tigers snapped him up.

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On February 9, he tweeted that he had a flight booked and was seemingly on the way.

But by midweek, this week, his journey had still failed to materialise.

"I haven't left yet," Jones told The Star.

"I was supposed to land in Monday but it has been a nightmare travelling in all this (covid lockdown.)"

Sam Jones.Sam Jones.
Sam Jones.

One bright spot is that when he does land in the UK, Jones says he won't be quarantined as he is classed as an elite athlete.

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That means he could possibly make his debut for Telford on Saturday against Raiders in the NIHL competition.

He is due to link up on the blue line with another Steeler, Cole Shudra.

Shudra is looking forward to playing alongside the 23-year-old former Fife Flyer.

Similarly, Shudra, 22, can't wait to watch and learn from a Telford team-mate who has seen it all in the modern era.

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Jonathan Weaver is twice Shudra's age, but still has plenty left in the tank.

"It is going to be great playing with a guy like Weaves, he has played in this country for so long, he has got so much experience," Shudra said.

"You can see after just practising with him, he has still got such a good hockey brain, his skill level is still there, so why not keep playing if you have still got it?"

Weaver was playing for Durham Wasps six years before Shudra was born!

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"He is always smiling and enjoying himself at practice; he is one of the most competitive players out there."

*Meanwhile, former Steelers' coach Paul Thompson is lifting silverware, once again.

His side Unterland Cavaliers won the Coppa Italia, beating Merano 3-2 in the final.

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