Tony Hand agrees two year contract extension

Monday, 28th March 2016

The J Davidson sponsored Manchester Phoenix is delighted to announce that Head Coach Tony Hand has agreed a new two year contract with the club.

After just completing his tenth season with the Phoenix, Tony’s long term deal underlines the club’s ambitions as they return to Manchester for the 2016/17 season.

Tony commented: “It’s been the toughest season of my career, in terms of the challenges we’ve faced both on and off the ice.  I have to give Neil, the players and supporters a huge amount of credit in being able to get through the season, and in reaching the playoffs.

“For such a small squad, we’ve faced a particularly high number of injuries, and coming up against the best team in the league in the playoffs with just two lines at some stages was always going to be difficult.  I’m proud with the way we competed all year and it’s a great base to build on for next season.”

Phoenix’s GB defenceman Mark Thomas also announced his retirement following the playoff games, and Tony has paid tribute to his career: “Mark has been a great servant to British ice hockey, but not only that, he’s a great person to be around.  I always look at how players conduct themselves off the ice and Mark has been the complete professional for many years.”

Looking to the future, Tony commented: “I am excited about the future of the club under Neil’s leadership – most people don’t see what goes on behind the scenes but Neil is completely dedicated to ensuring this club is successful and has a legacy for years to come.

“For me, this is the busiest time of the year.  I’ve been speaking with several players, and some have already agreed in principle to return.  We need more depth in terms of British players, and I hope our new rink will entice players to the club.”

Tony Hand

Tony Hand

Manchester Phoenix Supporters Club

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