Sunday January 13th – Slough Jets Programme

Well what a busy week it’s been after the first games back from the Christmas break. At the time of writing (Tuesday) we’re still trying to find dates to fit in the cup semi-final given the Bison already have a fixture on January 30th at Telford due to the rink refurbishment re-opening, then a Wednesday blocked off due to the GB tournament and then a Jets road game too. We have put forward the date we can play the home game and we are waiting to hear that our date has been accepted and also to know the away date. Hopefully this will be sorted out by the time you get to read this.

We’ve also had “photographer gate” meaning that no further access to the penalty box will be allowed for any photographer at any rink holding a game under the EIHA sanction. This has come about as the EIHA have decided to enforce IIHF rules. Section 3 – Rule 325: Penalty Bench Attendant – there shall be ONE penalty bench attendant per team bench. This means that neither our photographer, nor photographers visiting by reciprocal rights, nor press photographers will have access to the penalty box area during in active part of the game which is a big kick in the teeth for media relations as a picture is accepted to be worth 1,000 words!

On Tuesday Slava completed the deal to bring Ciaran Long to the Jets. I submitted his on-line registration request and collected quotes for the press release and we all agreed the news would be announced on Wednesday morning. Unfortunately Ciaran’s registration on Fixtures Live was done using somebody else’s email address, and this wasn’t changed during his time with Basingstoke nor Manchester. I then received a call on Tuesday evening informing me that this person had outed the news on Facebook meaning I’d have to bring forward the media release. I don’t know what was posted on Facebook as I am not connected to the person I’m told posted the news on that social networking site but it’s not really fantastic to steal any team’s thunder in announcing the signing of a player.

On the flip side I’d like to praise the Peterborough organisation for their handling of the Greg Pick signing. It’s a shame that we couldn’t keep him but with James Hutchinson singing and now Ciaran Long this means that we wouldn’t have the opportunities to offer Greg to help in his development. Peterborough signed him and kindly allowed me to write and announce his departure before releasing their own statement saying that he’d signed and a fantastic statement it was too.

Speaking of fantastic what a great start to 2013 last weekend was results wise. Sending Bracknell away pointless is always good and then to go to Peterborough which has been a tricky place for us this season and come back with a second set of full points. Four points to start the year after a weekend break was very welcome but none of us are under any false illusions the tough task of this weekend. Last night we were at Basingstoke who are one of the favourites for the title this year and tonight we face the Lightning who managed to gain fourth place in the table but thankfully not in time to edge us out of the cup. Ahead of the weekend we’re in fifth place by 1 point but with a game in hand so this is a big weekend for us to get back into the top four.

Last weekend was our biggest attendance of the season to date, this weekend we follow that with a Sunday home game which isn’t traditionally good for our attendance but with it being kids for a quid tonight hopefully we’ll be continuing the trend and tonight will be another loud and proud night.

My team, your team, OUR TEAM