Edinburgh Capitals will face a new team in 2017-18 after Milton Keynes Lightning confirmed that they will join ice hockey’s Elite League the season after next.
The team currently plays in the English Premier League, where they have advanced to the play-off finals weekend in Coventry.
Lightning head coach Pete Russell, who also runs the Great Britain national team, said: “I can’t wait. I think it’s great for the venue, it is a great rink here. The way hockey is going right now this is a really good move for a club which is growing.
“I think we have a real core of top-end Brits and if we can keep them here we will have a really good base to build from.”
Elite League chairman Tony Smith added: “We are very pleased that we are expanding the league. This is something that we all feel strongly about and hopefully this isn’t the end of the expansion.”
Milton Keynes will be expected to join the Erhardt (southern) Conference of the Elite League, which already houses Belfast, Coventry, Nottingham, Manchester and Sheffield. Edinburgh would still play these teams despite being in the Gardiner (northern) Conference.
A new team for the Gardiner Conference is likely for 2017/18 to make sure the league would have 12 team rather than 11.