BASINGSTOKE Bison will open their English Premier League campaign with a visit from the Peterborough Phantoms on Saturday September 13.

The following day, they play their first English Challenge Cup fixture, when they travel to reigning National Hockey League South One champions Chelmsford Chieftains.

Bison player/coach Doug Sheppard said: “Peterborough are always a talented side and then the following day we go straight into the cup.”

This season the English Challenge Cup is split into two groups, with the Bison in the south group with EPL rivals Bracknell, Guildford, Milton Keynes and Swindon, along with top NIHL sides Chelmsford, Invicta and Wightlink.

The first time the Herd play the sides in their own league and also the South Group, the games will double up as cup and league games. When they face the NIHL teams they only count towards the cup.

Before the league campaign starts, the Bison will face local rivals Guildford Flames in a double header pre-season showdown on the first weekend of September.

The Herd’s Surrey rivals will travel to the Basingstoke Arena on Saturday September 6, with the return at the Spectrum the following day.

The Flames beaten by the Bison in the English Premier League Cup and Play-off semi-finals, have had a busy summer recruiting new faces to their line-up.

Sheppard said: “This is going to be a really big test for us right off the bat. Guildford certainly are a lot deeper as a team this season.”

The pre-season home game against Guildford is included on the Bison season ticket.



13 Peterborough (h)

14 Chelmsford (a) (cup)

20 Manchester (h)

21 Peterborough (a)

27 Telford (h)


4 Guildford (h) (cup)

5 Invicta (a) (cup)

11 Sheffield (h)

12 Bracknell (a) (cup)

18 Manchester (h)

19 Sheffield (a)

25 Milton K (a) (cup)

26 Swindon (a) (cup)


1 Bracknell (h) (cup)

2 Guildford (a) (cup)

8 Milton K (h) (cup)

9 Manchester (a)

15 Swindon (h) (cup)

16 Telford (a)

22 Chelmsford (h) (cup)

23 Wightlink (a) (cup)

29 Telford (h)

30 Peterborough (a)


6 Peterborough (h)

7 Invicta (h) (cup)

13 Milton K (a)

14 Sheffield (a)

20 Bracknell (a)

21 Guildford (h)

27 Wightlink (h) (cup)

28 Swindon (h)


1 Swindon (a)

3 Telford (h)

4 Manchester (a)

10 Peterborough (h)

11 Guildford (a)

17 Manchester (h)

18 Telford (a)

24 Milton K (h)

25 Sheffield (a)

31 Bracknell (h)


1 Manchester (a)

7 Sheffield (h)

14 Bracknell (h)

15 Peterborough (a)

18 Guildford (a)

21 Sheffield (h)

28 Guildford (h)


1 Telford (a)

7 Swindon (h)

8 Bracknell (a)

14 Swindon (a)

15 Milton K (h)

21 Milton K (a)