Doug's Diary

Basingstoke Gazette: Doug's Diary Doug's Diary

I SAID last week that play-off hockey was exciting.

Saturday night in Sheffield certainly was that, but the long journey back and the clocks going forward meant that many of us were getting to bed on Sunday morning around five.

That took some of the edge off Sunday evening’s match but we ran out convincing winners.

We took a large away support to Sheffield and, as always, they roared us through a tough, physical game. Michael Wales’ injury meant that Andy Melachrino, Tom Karpov and Ciaran Long joined up again on our top line and they troubled the Sheffield defence all night.

At the other end, Dean Skinns stopped everything they threw at him and he thoroughly earned his man-of-the-match award.

Michael Wales turned up on the media platform on Sunday, having had a successful operation earlier in the week.

He has contributed so much to our success this year. We wish him a speedy and successful recovery.

All our forward lines put the puck in the net. The biggest cheer of the night came when young Cameron Wynn scored.

Skating forward to receive his man-of-the-match award is a memory I’m sure he’ll keep for a long time, especially as it was the last home game of what has been a great season.

So our focus now is on our game on Saturday in Coventry in the semi-finals. We went out at that stage last year and none of us want to experience that again.

Our opponents will be Guildford. We won’t be making the mistake of looking at our record against them in the League. It’s a long time since we have played them and I know they’re a different team now.

See you in Coventry this weekend, twice, I hope!

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