Mark Lovell interview

Friday, 29th August 2003

A native of Chester on the border of North Wales, hardly surprisingly Marc Lovell’s first encounters with ice hockey came at his local Deeside ice rink where he used to go to skate and began watching the Deeside Dragons.

Marc explains how he got started. “I was at a public skating session when I was a kid and saw the hockey team practising. I was fascinated and thought I would like to try it for myself. I signed on for a beginner’s course as an under-10 and I’ve played ever since. It’s a great game and now, like the other local players, I’ve got a chance to play at a level I never thought would come my way.”

Most young players suggest their first coach as a major influence on their development, but Marc stays close to home as his cites his parents as the biggest factor in his hockey. “My Mum and Dad have been terrific. They’ve supported me, driven me all over the place to practises and games and I can’t thank them enough. They’ve given up so much of their time, early morning and late evening in order to help me and I’ll always be grateful to them.”

Naturally, like any sportsperson, representing the country and playing for the national team rank high up the list of proudest moments and Marc is no different when he noted, “playing for England at U-19 level as a 17-year old against Scotland and being part of a team that won an international tournament staged in Solihull are my favourite moments so far – hopefully, I’ll have a few more good memories to relish in the future.”

As for favourite players in the game, Marc names a household hockey name from the NHL in Pavel Bure and the not quite so familiar Daniel ‘Budzy’ Mackriel whom he played with in Telford last season. “Bure is fantastic - great speed and a true goalscorer and game breaker. ‘Budzy’ was great to play with and helped me settle in at Telford.”

As for his potential future with the Phoenix Marc added, “This is a great chance for me and the other local players. The way the Elite League and the Phoenix have formed gives us probably the best chance to make it at a higher level in the game. Naturally I want to be successful and quite simply to play at as high a level as I can for as long as I can.”

Phoenix head coach Rick Brebant noted, “Marc is a big strong lad and definitely someone I can work with. I’ll be looking to help him with his mobility and making the best use of his physical attributes. He’s worked hard in the training sessions we’ve had so far and like the rest of the local players is working on a strength and conditioning programme to help them make it to the next level.”