Business as usual for Caps as they target another victory

It's business as usual for Edinburgh Capitals as they face current Elite League champions Cardiff Devils at Murrayfield tonight (face-off 7.30pm).

Wednesday, 29th November 2017, 5:30 am
Updated Wednesday, 6th December 2017, 11:47 am
Edinburgh Capitals won at Murrayfield last weekend and they now hope to slay Cardiff tonight
Edinburgh Capitals won at Murrayfield last weekend and they now hope to slay Cardiff tonight

Caps, with just three league wins from 18-games, are enduring a torrid time both on and off the ice this season. Currently undergoing a corporate re-structure, the details of which remain under-wraps, the club have promised to provide a full statement once the process is complete.

A club spokesperson said: “We’re focusing on our games as usual and busily preparing for Cardiff’s visit tonight. Hockey is, and will continue at Murrayfield, as we look to build on our recent home wins against Coventry and Dundee.”

Capitals had been hoping to announce a signing this week, a replacement for recent departure and top-scorer Marek Tvrdon, who quit the club earlier this month.

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The spokesperson continued: “The club are actively looking for a replacement for 
Marek Tvrdon, but we will not say anything on that until we have something concrete in place.”

Sunday’s 5-3 win over Dundee and the recent 5-2 success over Coventry were sandwiched between Saturday’s 8-2 horror-show defeat at Braehead Clan and club captain Michael D’Orazio, although pleased to see home form picking up, is looking to see more effort away from Murrayfield.

D’Orazio said: “Any time we can get a win in these tough times is a positive. We’ve won our last two games at home. We’re looking forward to tonight, hopefully we can keep it going.”

“Saturday, our game in Braehead was absolutely horrendous, we need to be ready to play on the road. There shouldn’t be that much of a difference, if we can put in a big effort at home we should be able to do the same away. We need to find some consistency in our game, and go from there.”

Experienced Kazakh forward Pavel Vorobyev, who missed Sunday’s win after suffering a lower-body injury against Braehead, skated yesterday and the former Chicago Blackhawk may return tonight. Callum Boyd, who has missed the last three matches through injury, is yet to return to full training, although he could also feature against the Devils, who currently sit fifth in the table, winning just once in their last five games. However, they beat Edinburgh 7-2 when the two sides met in Wales earlier this month.

D’Orazio continued: “Cardiff are one of the best teams in the league. By their own standards they’re struggling a little bit at the moment because they’re not right at the top of the standings. We can expect a good game. It’s going to be tough – any team can beat any team in this league. Anything can happen.”

On paper, Devils are a different proposition to the Dundee side Caps met last time out and they must put in a solid defensive effort to stand any chance.

Caps have conceded 94 goals already this season, 20 more than Milton Keynes Lightning, who hold the second worst defensive record in the league, although with two wins from their last three games the recent arrival of Latvian defenceman Nikita Kolesnikovs, now in his second spell with the club, appears to be paying dividends.

Fellow blue-liner D’Orazio said: “Nikita’s come in and done a good job. Our defence has been struggling, but I emphasise it’s always a game of team-defence and just because there is a mistake in our zone, and it turns into a goal being scored, does not mean it’s on the defence alone.

“Sometimes fans and people around the team have targeted the defence and goalie (for criticism), but it’s really a five man team out there. Everyone’s got to do their role, pointing the finger at the defence or the goalie is not the right thing to do. It’s a five man unit and that’s how we play out there.”