Richardson makes tough choice

Friday, 10th October 2003

Salford born defenceman Russ Richardson will play his last games for the Manchester Phoenix this weekend having advised head coach Rick Brebant that he is finding it hard to fit hockey and university studies into his schedule.

Twenty-four year old Richardson spoke at length with Brebant after Thursday’s on-ice training session in Deeside and the coach admitted, “it must have been a hard choice for Rusty to make. He has his studies and our training programme to fit in and in a few weeks he has a field trip to take and that would have meant missing at least two weeks of training and playing.”

Brebant added, “we were just beginning to change his role with the club moving him into a forward position but, now we’ll have to make different plans. I’d like to go on record as thanking Russ for his efforts, he’s been a lively member of the roster to date and we wish him well for the future with his schooling.”

Richardson said, “it’s been a lot of fun and hard work and a I really wish I could stay with the team. It has been hard and I’ve felt my studies suffering and my long-term future lies with them. I’d like to thank the Phoenix for giving me the chance and I know the team will do well. My last games are against Sheffield on Friday and Basingstoke away on Saturday – I’d like to go out in style and will be giving it 110% every time Rick puts me out there. I’d like to thank the other players and the fans too for their support, it’s been an experience.”

Phoenix coach Brebant noted, “Now as well as looking for another import forward, we will cast our net again for further homegrown talent – any players wishing to try out for the Phoenix should contact me as soon as possible.”

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