April 20, 2019

With EIHA Conference weekend only two weeks away ENTP head coach Ben Pitchley is pleased to announce this year’s U19 team staff for the game against Scotland on Friday May 3rd.

Head Coach for this year’s England U19 team is Tom Watkins, currently Telford Tigers head coach.

Tom brings a wealth of experience to the role through a very successful playing career and his equally successful coaching career, with both club and country.

Tom will be assisted by Bracknell Bees head coach Doug Sheppard.

Doug is no stranger to this country with a stellar playing career behind him, and he has carried this into his coaching career.

Pitchley said: “Both of these coaches have a winning mindset, and see development of younger players as a ‘has to happen’ process with everything they do at club level.  I’m delighted that they have joined the England programme for this season’s showpiece game.

“Both of these coaches have a habit of winning, so this game is going to be a good fit for them.”

Joining them as team manager is Donna Balmer.

Donna has been involved with the ENTP previously and the old England programme for many years, so is a perfect fit for this role.

With this being the 25 year anniversary of Conference, England management have confirmed that they will be putting out their strongest team possible.

Tom Watkins said on his appointment: “I’ve watched the England v Scotland fixture from the stands over the last few years, I now get a chance to be part of this showcase game for the first time.

“The rivalry between the two sets of players will be high and I’m sure this will be a very competitive game.  Having been on opposing benches to Doug for a number of seasons I’m looking forward to working alongside him.”

England v Scotland for the Frank Dempster Memorial Trophy is at Ice Sheffield on Friday May 3, 2019.  Face off is at 8pm and admission for spectators is free.

The game is the curtain-raiser for the EIHA Junior Inter-Conference Tournament which this year celebrates its 25th anniversary.