Fife Flyers: ‘Beyond excited’ for return to action after 16-month absence
Fife Flyers have confirmed the team will ice in the 2021-22 Elite League season.
The club confirmed its plans in a long overdue update to fans posted to their website last night.
Flyers’ statement came on the same day as Glasgow Clan - currently trying to take ownership of their rink - said they too would be part of the new season.
The statement spoke of “turning a corner” after an “incredibly tough year and a half” since the pandemic effectively mothballed the sport in March 2020.
The season is due to start on September 25-26, but it remains unclear how many fans will be allowed rinkside - and there is no indication on the protocols the league and club will have to have in place to operate post-COVID.
The next update from the Scottish Government on restrictions on indoor events is not due until August 9, giving Flyers little more than seven weeks to finalise their operating plans for the new season.
OnFife, which runs the region’s theatres, has already scrapped its autumn plans for a return to full programming amid the lack of clarity - an indication of the challenges which may lie ahead for ice hockey’s planned return.
Flyers’ broad brush statement focussed on its work behind the scenes which included a revamp of its much criticised media output, as well as securing sponsors and signing players.
Tom Muir, director, said it felt “like an eternity” since hockey as last staged at the rink.
He added: “I am beyond excited to finally have hockey back in Kirkcaldy and put a team on the ice for another season in the EIHL.
“It has been an incredibly tough year and half for everyone, but as we are turning the corner and all things going well with the Scottish Government’s roadmap back to normality, we should be able to fill Fife Ice Arena come the first game of the season.”That is scheduled to happen the weekend of September 25-26, but fixtures have not yet been released.
Added Mr Muir: “I would like to thank our amazing fans who have stuck by us throughout this difficult period.
“Your endless support has been a great motivation throughout this period.”