Welsh winger Matthew Myers is fired up and ready for Cardiff Devils’ opening Elite League fixture of the season on Saturday.
Cardiff-born Myers scored for Devils in their Champions Hockey League clash with SC Bern in Switzerland and will play a key role against his former club Nottingham Panthers at Ice Arena Wales on Saturday.
That fixture is the first of three successive home matches for Devils and they are full of confidence following their European adventure.
Results went against coach Andrew Lord and his team, but the quality of their performances showed they can match the best teams in Europe on their day.
Bern edged home 3-2 thanks to a late winner after Devils had led twice and the Welsh club can reflect with pride on their team displays in Austria (v Red Bull Salzburg) and Switzerland (v Bern).
“Our match against SC Bern was tight the whole way,” said Myers. “It was always going to be tough against an extremely good Swiss team.
“We broke down a couple of times and that was the difference. Teams of Bern’s calibre will capitalise on those chances. Credit to them and good luck going forward.
“They took their chances when they came.
“The boys are in good shape and the club have worked to ensure we have an even stronger team going into the new Elite League season.
“We have a really good group of guys and our European games helped in the bonding process. We only have a few new guys and spending five days together for those CHL matches brought us together.
“The guys had a few beers after the match in Bern and that, too, was a solid bonding experience.
“There are two matches left in Europe, against Vaxjo Lakers home and away. Swedish teams expect to batter us, but let’s see if we can finish strongly and go for two wins.”
Cardiff open their domestic fixtures with a full strength team, although coach Lord remains intent on adding a top quality defenceman to his group.
He is ready to wait until the right man becomes available.
Devils are now focused on playing Panthers at home in Cardiff Bay on Saturday, followed by Milton Keynes Lightning in the Challenge Cup the following evening.
Coventry Blaze then play at Ice Arena Wales on Saturday, September 22.
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Remaining Devils fixtures in September
Saturday 15: Cardiff Devils v Nottingham Panthers (7pm, EL)
Sunday 16: Cardiff Devils v MK Lightning (6pm, CC group C)
Saturday 22: Cardiff Devils v Coventry Blaze (7pm, CC)
Sunday 23: Sheffield Steelers v Cardiff Devils (4pm, EL)
Wednesday 26: Nottingham Panthers v Cardiff Devils (7.30pm, EL)
Saturday 29: Guildford Flames v Cardiff Devils (6pm, CC)
Sunday 30: Cardiff Devils v Glasgow Clan (6pm, EL)