UK Forum All-Stars 2012 Preview

It’s the height of Summer (if you can call it that!) and once again thoughts turn to the annual ice hockey fund raiser, the UK Forum All-Stars Weekend, that will be taking place this weekend in Cardiff.

This year the competition has been increased to six teams of hockey players of all abilities who will each be representing a charity. This year the beneficiaries will be Devils Community Foundation, Ty Hafan, The Prostate Cancer Charity, Breast Cancer Care, Dreams Come True & Help for Heroes who will be defending the trophy they won last season. (Click on the links to find out more about each charity)

This year I will be representing Dreams Come True as I did the last time the event was held in Cardiff in 2010 where we were losing finalists. This year we’re hoping to go one better and I’ll have several of my Nottingham Phantoms team mates to help me, including Phantoms top point scorer Rob North who is captaining this year’s Dreams Come True team.

Of course the whole point of the weekend is to raise money for charity and you can sponsor me for Dreams Come True by visiting my Just Giving page or texting JDCT £1 to 70070 from any mobile phone. Your help would be very much appreciated.

The weekend will start on Friday evening, when a special ‘Hockey Debate’ will be taking place at the Future Inn, Cardiff. The guests will be Max Birbraer, Brent Pope, Referee Mike Hicks, Marc Twaite & Andy Corcoran. The evening starts at 7.30pm, entry is £5 (kids and players taking part in the hockey get in free, see the poster above for full details).

On Saturday all the hockey action starts from 4pm at the Big Blue Tent. Each match is played as a 20 minute running clock game and a round robin group system over Saturday & Sunday will sort out the teams for the final three games, a 5th & 6th place play-off, a 3rd & 4th place play-off and the final between the teams that finish 1st & 2nd in the round robin, which should take place around 8pm on Sunday evening.

Earlier this week I spoke to joint organiser David Grant about the upcoming weekend. I asked him what he was looking forward to most, he said “It’s becoming the highlight of the summer for so many people, and in my opinion it’s because everyone who comes to this weekend, is treat equal on ice and off ice. We believe that everyone has equal input and it shows with how many people come back year after year.
I enjoy meeting new people, I enjoy meeting up with old friends who I’ve not seen for a while, and we get to do the things that we all enjoy, whilst at the same time raise money for some fantastic causes. I think this year when the news of shoina came out everyone wanted to make sure we raised more than ever, and the energy shown from people to ensure we have done that, is a part of the tribute that we will offer to a wonderful lady no longer with us”

I also asked him how the fundraising was going so far, he replied “Without knowing the exact figure, it is difficult to say, as it changes all the time with people picking up donations from everywhere, however to compare to last year, we are on course to break the figure we raised last year, how far we can go – who knows but I do think that we’re gonna give it one top effort to beat last years total.”

So if you’re near the Welsh capital this weekend and you’d like to take in some hockey why not pop along to the BBT, you’ll not regret it.


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