Expect four Queenstown Ice Blacks to be named shortly in the national ice hockey side – from left, Stacey Rout, Braden Lee, Hayden Argyle and Brett Speirs, pictured at the Queenstown Fun Centre with the team’s locally based equipment manager Mark Shearer (right).
The local boys will play in the division three world champs in Dunedin this April.
The quartet practised at the Fun Centre rink last weekend in the final of three training camps.
Other Queenstowners involved again will be manager Charlie Reid and chiropractor Chris Julian.
Several other Queenstown Ice Blacks are unavailable – long-time captain Simon Glass and Reid’s son Stephen, who are both marrying in the New Year; Ryan Lee, who’s left for Canada and is being followed there by Jamie Moore-Carter; plus the retiring Simon Wilson.
The Ice Blacks were dropped down to division three last April after losing all their games, albeit narrowly, at the division two worlds in Australia.
The Kiwi team is determined to get back into division two by winning gold in Dunedin and then retaining their spot in that higher grade at the 2010 worlds, Reid says.