ICE hockey youngster Jordan Hedley has followed in the footsteps of Lightning ace Leigh Jamieson by being called up for international duty with Great Britain.
Hedley, 16, got his first taste of the big time when he took to the ice in Lightning’s 3-0 pre-season friendly win against Telford Tigers back in September, and has played numerous times for the city’s second side, MK Thunder, this season.
Now the young netminder has been named in the 32-strong preliminary U18 squad to contest the World Championships in April. Even with previous GB and England selections already under his belt, the news acknowledges Hedley’s tremendous talent and composure between the pipes, which have earned him the praise of Lightning’s player coach Nick Poole this season.
Hedley claimed a shutout and the man of the match award in that victory against Telford, and will take part in training camps with the GB squad in February and March before contesting Division 2A at the World Championships in Estonia from March 30 to April 6, should he make the final squad.
Hedley becomes the second city player to be called up for international duty this month, with 27-year-old Jamieson named in the preliminary senior squad for Great Britain’s big Winter Olympics qualifying tournament in Latvia in February, having played a leading role in the team’s recent success in Japan.
Lightning coach Poole paid tribute to both players who have come through the junior ranks in Milton Keynes and continue to impress in the national stage.
“Both Jordan and Jaimo have played their hearts out for their teams since the season began, and everyone involved with ice hockey in Milton Keynes is thrilled that their efforts have been recognised with international selection,” he said.
“Jordan went between the pipes at English Premier League level for the first time and he showed absolutely no trace of nerves. It was a very impressive debut, and he shows that same level of composure every week for MK Thunder.
“Both guys are great examples of the talent that has come through the junior hockey system in Milton Keynes, and they are a fantastic advertisement for the sport both locally and nationally.”