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There is such a thing as sledge hockey. Manchester Phoenix are pleased to announce their home debut in British Sledge Hockey at the Altrincham Ice Dome on Saturday 11th August.
Now what is this sledge hockey malarkey? I hear you ask.
Two men from Sweden invented the game in the 1960’s because they wanted to continue to play ice hockey despite their physical disabilities. The sled was designed to include two skate blades on a metal frame that allowed the puck to pass underneath. Two poles with bike handles for sticks and you still have the same basic design today.
Competition for real started up in 1971 with 5 European teams. GB established their first team in 1981 and Canada in 1982. The game was introduced into the Paralympics in 1994 and is now a major sport in the Winter Paralympic Games.
The game has developed immeasurably with the sport now totally inclusive, open also to able bodied players, incorporating mixed teams and has taken off at club level in Britain.
Planet Ice will be sponsoring the British Sledge Hockey League and will have teams from Kingston, Peterborough, The Battle Back Bison (consisting of injured military personnel) and our very own Manchester Phoenix.
Saturday will showcase games between all teams and with players from all over the country, Phoenix will be doing their best to give the home crowd something to shout about.
The brand new Phoenix squad, coached by Pete Hagan, have current and former GB players in the line up.
Not only is this Phoenix’s first ever game, the weekend is also important in the build-up and preparation of the GB team for the 2014 Paralympics.
The action kicks off at 1600 hrs and is FREE.
If you are missing your hockey and need a fix, come down on Saturday and support your club’s latest venture.
It is sure to be a fun day with something completely different for many. The dedication and skill will surprise you and the entertainment value amazing.
See you at the Dome