Flyers recruit ready for home debut

Joshua Podge Turnbull Fife Flyers
Joshua Podge Turnbull Fife Flyers

FIFE Flyers latest recruit is looking forward to making his home debut this weekend after being blown away by the club’s away support.

Joshua ‘Podge’ Turnbull made his first Flyers appearances in the defeats in Sheffield and Nottingham after flying in from America at the end of last week.

Almost 300 noisy Fifers travelled to the away double-header, now Turnbull (pictured) is eager to sample the famous atmosphere inside Fife Ice Arena.

“I had a blast over the weekend, and it was great to see the fans,” said the 24-year-old centreman.

“I’ve never been on a team that brings 300 fans to an away game so that was pretty neat. It just adds to my excitment for this weekend.

“I’ve heard nothing but good things about the noise levels and chants.

“It will be my first experience of that so I’m really looking forward to it.”

The weekend was a tough introduction to British hockey for Turnbull against the top two teams in the Elite League.

“I used it as a measuring stick to see where I fit into the league,” he said. “It also gave me an idea how hard this team works.

“We were down in both games but we never gave up.

“That’s something we can take into the play-offs, granted we make it. It’s very encouraging to see the type of guys we have in the room.”

Turnbull admitted that swapping Missouri Mavericks for Fife has been a whirlwind move.

“It’s been a pretty interesting trip - I’ll say that,” he said. “I’ve never really done this before.

“Every time I’ve been traded in the past I’ve had a couple of days to reset, get back into neutral and start again.

“There’s adjustments to be made with jet lag and the travel in general, so it was great to jump straight into two tough contests.”

Turnbull described scoring his first Flyers goal in the 5-3 defeat to Nottingham as “a great feeling”. He is confident that the team has what it takes to qualify for the play-offs.

“We’ve put ourselves right on the doorstep of the play-offs, and hopefully bringing me in gives the team an extra boost,” he said,

Flyers were forced to call upon third choice netminder, Craig Douglas, in Nottingham after back-up Blair Daly dislodged his pelvis.

Daly has been standing in for injured Bryan Pitton, but with both receiving round the clock physio treatment, Dutiaume is hopeful his two netminders will be fit for this weekend’s home double-header.

“That’s the benefit of having team medical staff this year - we get answers quickly,” he said.

“Blair saw our chiropracter on Monday and it looks like that sorted him out pretty good.

“He couldn’t walk after the Nottingham game but it’s certainly eased off.

“He’s done a good job stepping in for Byran, and hopefully we’ll have him fit for the weekend.

“We’re optimistic that Bryan will be on our bench - if not starting for the weekend.

“We’re being very cautious because we don’t want to lose him for the season. He won’t be on the ice until Friday and we’ll make a decision then.”

Flyers welcome Hull on Saturday night before Coventry make the trip to Kirkcaldy on Sunday.

“We don’t have many home games left after this so we need to make this double-header count,” Dutiaume said. “If we got four points it would put pressure on the teams around us.

“It could come down to last two or three games depending on what happens down the stretch, but we’d like to have it sealed up by then.”

MATTHEW ELDER

Twitter: @mattelder_ffp