By Steven Oldham, Sports Correspondent
Trafford Metros got off to a winning start at the weekend in the English National League with more than a little help from big brothers Manchester Phoenix.
Reigning English Premier League champions Phoenix kick off their title defence next week’s War of the Roses double header against Sheffield Steeldogs.
Ahead of the new season, Ciaran Long and Josh Ward joined up with the Metros, with both hitting goals in a promising 5-3 victory over the Nottingham Lions on Saturday.
Both Ciaran and Josh have joined Phoenix in the close season and their accomplished debuts will not have gone un-noticed by Phoenix coach Tony Hand.
Ciaran then went on to hit a hat-trick in the stunning 7-2 away demolition of the Solihull Barons on Sunday night, and was suitably pleased with his first weekend in Altrincham.
He said: “The open netter I scored on Saturday is the best goal I’ve ever scored, and then to follow that with a hat-trick on Sunday, the weekend could not have got any better.”
He added that he enjoyed playing for the Metros and was happy to be back on the ice after the summer break.
Former Nottingham forward Josh enjoyed playing against his old team-mates and was impressed with the turnout at the Ice Dome on Sunday.
He said: “It was great to see so many Phoenix fans joining the Metros’ regulars and it made for a great atmosphere. The support for me and Ciaran was super and it was a great welcome for us.”
Long and Ward contributed to an excellent all round performance by the Metros, whose two back to back victories take them to the top of the fledgling league table.