Phantoms on the trophy trail tonight

Martin Susters in action against Bracknell.
Martin Susters in action against Bracknell.
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Peterborough Phantoms head coach Slava Koulikov is expecting a close NIHL Autumn Cup final.

The city side travel to Sheffield tonight (December 5, 7.30pm) to take on the Steeldogs in the first leg of the showpiece clash.

And Phantoms are determined to put themselves in prime position to lift the trophy on home ice in the December 14 second leg as they chase their first silverware since the English Premier League play-offs triumph of 2015.

Koulikov said: “It’s a six-period game and the first three of them are tonight in Sheffield.

“We won’t get too high if it goes well or too low if it doesn’t quite go to plan.

“The key thing is ensuring we are in a position to win the trophy in the second leg in our rink.

“Whatever happens, I think it is going to be close. They won here and we won there in the group games, and we’re both going well in our leagues.

“Both teams are also going into the cup final in good place after having four-point weekends.”

Phantoms beat their two biggest NIHL Division One South title rivals - table-topping Swindon and Bracknell - last weekend.

Sheffield, whose roster features last season’s all-star Phantoms forward Nathan Salem, are the unbeaten NIHL Division One North leaders having dropped just one point in 12 games.