Enhanced choice For Elite League teams

Wednesday, 3rd May 2006

The Elite Ice Hockey League is pleased to confirm that a new criterion has been established with the Government regarding non-European Players who require a Work Permit. The new agreement encompasses both the number of players per team and the leagues from which players can be selected.

In previous seasons, Elite League Teams recruiting players from North America were restricted in selecting from the East Coast, American and National Hockey Leagues with the majority coming to the UK from the ECHL. The new arrangement increases the pool of players available as teams can now also select from both the Central Hockey League and the United Hockey League.

In addition non-European Players who have been playing in Europe can now also be recruited, provided the league in which they played last season is in a country recognised by the International Ice Hockey Federation as being in Division 1 or above.

“We are pleased to have concluded negotiations and delivered these very significant changes, which greatly enlarge the pool of players open for selection to Elite League coaches,” reported Elite League Chairman Eamon Convery. “Furthermore the maximum number of Work Permit players that any team can have on their roster at any one time has been increased from five to the new level of nine.”

Convery concluded, “We have done all we can in terms of getting changes to the Work Permit Criteria. The challenge is now for the coaches in the Elite League to broaden their opportunities, seek out the best talent available and build exciting teams during the closed season.”

With the new season due to commence play in early September, fans across the UK will look forward greatly to their teams recruiting and re-building throughout the summer months.