GB wing ace thrilled to sort out his future

Rob Dowd

Rob Dowd

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Ice hockey clubs don’t throw three-year deals around very often, in the UK.

Especially when the player has missed much of the season due to a knee injury.

But Robert Dowd is a special case - and his spirits will be lifted today by the contract matched only by Rob Wilson in Sheffield’s history.

The Great Britain international, 27, winger has certainly had it rough this year.

First he broke a broken hand followed by the leg injury five weeks ago which has meant he has missed 21 games so far.

But out of sight is not out of mind, at Steelers.

Head coach Paul Thompson said: “We wanted to tie Robert in and he didn’t want to go anywhere else as he is an adopted Sheffield lad.

“He has been hampered by injuries this year which is a real shame as I really like his game and his work ethic. We’ve missed his shot, he is a shooter and we will see that shot for the next three seasons.

“Sheffield wants to keep the best British players and there are no better than him. In Dowd and Ben O’Connor I think we have the best. It’s always important that you have Brits that can score and he has shown year in year out that he can. He was on for another 20 plus goal season this year but the injuries have got in the way. To get 20 goals in this league now isn’t like it used to be. 20 now is like 30-35 a few years ago.

“With our aim for four quality lines its important we have quality all the way through our line up. We are delighted this deal is done and dusted.”

Dowd, who scored 13 goals and 29 points in 33 games this term, said: “I adopted Sheffield as my home from a pretty young age. So when management came to me with the contract I offer I pretty much accepted immediately.

“My family is settled here now and with the organisation moving forward the way it is I see exciting times here, It is always changing for the better at the moment which is great to see and great to be a part of.”

Earlier this week, Guillaume Desbiens was confirmed back with the club next year.

These two are added to Ben O’Connor, Mathieu Roy and Tyler Mosienko all already under contract for season 2016/17.