Raiders bring Oliver back for more

Defenceman joins list of Rom Valley Way returnees

Romford Raiders boss Mick Cahill has heaped praise on David Oliver, after he became the latest player to agree to return to Rom Valley Way.

Home-grown defenceman Oliver becomes the 14th name on player-coach Danny Marshall’s list for the 2012/13 National Ice Hockey League season, after JJ McGrath and Grant Taylor were also confirmed this week.

And Cahill is delighted to see the likeable blueliner back after last season’s double-winning campaign.

He said: “I’m personally very happy that Long Dave is back with us.

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“Competition for places on our blue line was stiff last season but I thought David made really good progress and certainly never let us down.

“I know I bang on a bit about how good David is on the bench, but he genuinely is. He is a great asset and is one of the real motivators, constantly geeing up his team-mates whatever the game position.”

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Oliver certainly stepped into the breach when fellow defenceman Billy Phillips was hit with a four-game suspension last season.

He adapted to the extra ice time without fuss, producing steady displays which helped the team to vital wins as they closed in on the English National League title, following their earlier success in the South East Trophy.

Cahill added: “There were occasions where David was our fifth defenceman and that will always lead to frustration or worse by the guy who misses out.

“With David and despite his frustration, he remained positive and supportive and, if anything, became even more vocal on the bench.

“We had a lot of rushing defencemen last season – some would say too many – so it’s good to have somebody who will stay at home and just do a good job without any fuss. That’s David.”

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