It’s been a busy time for Phantoms with a spell of three crucial games in the space of four days. For netminder Euan King it was even more hectic.
King became a father for the third time when daughter Eva, weighing 9lb 3oz, was born in the early hours of last Friday morning.
The 28 year-old was at wife Stefanie’s side during the birth before snatching some sleep and then helping his team-mates earn a point in a 5-4 overtime loss at Swindon later that day.
King, who also has two older daughters, three year-old Phoebe and Annalise who is one, said: “Stefanie went into labour at about 8 o’clock on Thursday night when I was on my way to training. I literally pulled into the rink, turned around again and dashed back home!
“Eva was born at 2.24am and I was at the hospital until about 5.30am when I nipped home for a few hours sleep.
“I went back to hospital to bring Stefanie and Eva home at lunchtime and it was lovely to be able to introduce her to our other girls before going to the game. The boys held the bus up for a little while for me.
“Had there been any issues with the birth, I would obviously have missed the game. But everything went well, everyone was happy and healthy, and I’m very lucky that my wife was very understanding about me playing.
“I hadn’t had a lot of sleep so my expectations were a bit lower than normal, but the boys did a great job of protecting me and it was good to be able to help us get a point.”
King earned the man-of-the-match accolade in Swindon and repeated that feat 24 hours later when Phantoms triumphed 2-1 in a top-of-the-table clash at Basingstoke last Saturday, but he couldn’t prevent the Bison from claiming quick revenge with a 4-3 triumph at Planet Ice on New Year’s Day.
Phantoms’ next league outing provides King with a return to his former club. They travel to the Lee Valley rink to take on London Raiders on Sunday (5.30pm).
King left the Raiders in November to return to Phantoms. He added: “I left London on good terms with the coaching staff and I get on fine with the players.
“They have a pretty good bunch of fans there as well. I’m sure there will be a few comments made, but it’s no different to when I went back to Chelmsford with London.
“The crowd won’t have any impact on the game as such. I don’t tend to hear a lot when my focus is on what’s happening on the ice.
“We’re going there with the intention of winning the game and picking up two points. The changing room is great and we’re all very positive to still be involved in all three competitions.”