Phoenix in fitness race against time

Friday, 24th October 2003

Manchester Phoenix are in a race against time to get key players back in their line-up for the coming weekend games away to Sheffield and at home on Sunday against Basingstoke.

Early winter ‘flu hit the camp ahead of Tuesdays’ trip to Nottingham and head coach Rick Brebant confirmed late on Thursday evening that he would wait until the last minute on Saturday to name his starting line-up.

“Three of the boys are still struggling to be ready for Saturday,” he advised, “but, they are better than they were 24 hours ago. It will be touch and go, and a lot will depend upon how they are at Fridays’ practise session. If there is any doubt, I won’t risk them playing and potentially ruling themselves out of Sundays’ home game. We have a score to settle with Basingstoke and I want a strong roster going out at home in front of our own fans.”

Brebant declined to comment in detail upon the condition of Slovak sniper Miroslav Skovira although he did add, “Skovy skated today and whilst he didn’t overwork, he didn’t report any adverse reaction either. Sometimes these things re-occur overnight and so we are fingers crossed on him.”

“We have a few other bumps and bruises from Tuesday that are still being treated,” commented the 38-year old coach who has returned to playing. “We certainly won’t be shorter benched than we were on Tuesday, I’m hopeful at least a couple will be ready.”