Sheffield Steelers' GB ace is ready to become a Dutch master

Ben O'Connor - GB's premier defenceman
Ben O'Connor - GB's premier defenceman

Sheffield Steelers defenceman Ben O’Connor says the squad is in good shape ahead of their first game in the Olympic Pre-Qualifiers in Cortina, today.

Thursday sees the opening game with Netherlands.

“Everyone’s spirits are high and it is good to spend time with the boys again.”

After facing Netherlands, late this afternoon, GB take on the unknown quality of Serbia who came through the first qualifying rounds and they round the tournament off with a match against hosts Italy.

“We are going to have to turn up every night,” continued O’Connor.

“There is no time to feel your way into the tournament, you have to be focused from the first face-off" says the offensive d-man, who could be hugely important for GB on the Power Play.

“We came through this stage four years ago and there is no reason why we can’t do it again.

“But we must not take a shift off throughout the next few games.

“Everyone is looking forward to beginning our Olympic journey.

"It is very special to wear the GB shirt and that extra bit special with it being an Olympic qualifier.”

GB fixtures

Thursday 11th February: GB v Netherlands - 4:30pm UK time (5:30pm local time)

Saturday 13th February: GB v Serbia - 4:30pm UK time (5:30pm local time)

Sunday 14th February: GB v Italy - 7:45pm UK time (8:45pm local time)