Monday, 6 February 2012

Dundee Ice Arena

Dundee Stars 6-2 Fife Flyers

5th February 2012

Having humiliated their hosts the last time they travelled up to Dundee, the Flyers decided (or so it appeared) to take a rather more respectful approach this time around, and chose to present their hosts with a couple of gifts by way of an apology.  

Thus it was, long before many of us had even managed to warm up our seats – within 58 seconds of the face-off to be precise - Dundee Stars had twice taken advantage of some lamentable rabbit-staring-into-headlights defending from the Fifers.

The visitors managed to get back to 2-1, and briefly 4-2, but in the end were well whupped.  The two early reverses did not help, but in truth Flyers were poor this evening – the poorest I had seen them, and their passing particularly woeful.  

Not just intercepted passes or ones which just failed to reach their intended team-mate, but a large number where there appeared no potential recipient at all.  Just aimless whacks into space.  Although in mitigation, I acknowledge this is a very easy game for a fat bloke to play, sitting on his arse in the crowd.

6-2 it eventually finished, with Stars’ Coach Brent Hughes’ final strike a perfect lesson to all watching in how to score when through one-on-one with the goaltender; something I have come to realise is a remarkably challenging thing to achieve in Ice Hockey.

The entrance to Dundee Ice Arena

Panorama of Dundee Ice Arena

In stark contrast to the rather more archaic arenas I had visited in Kirkcaldy and Edinburgh, Dundee Ice Arena (opened as recently as 2000) is a modern venue: all plastic seats and white painted roof supports.  What the place may lack in character, it makes up for in illumination – and for the first time I was able to follow proceedings quite easily, with very few of my usual “Wherezrafuckzapuck?” moments.

What Dundee Ice Arena did have in common with the other venues, however, was an insistence on blaring out snatches of irritatingly kitsch music during any break in play, but nowhere else had I seen the crowd enjoy such pieces as here.  'Tis indeed a long time since I have seen and heard such an enthusiastic clappalong to "Zorba The Greek".  Only in Dundee……..

This was a fun game - a kiddie was placed on a plastic sledge, then fired out onto the ice by some catapult-type thingy in the direction of five polystyrene skittles. 
Whoever knocked most down won a curry at a local restaurant: The Ashoka Shak.

The kids certainly seemed to enjoy proceedings, but I could not help
be put in mind of the sport of
Dwarf-Tossing - so beloved by members of the England Rugby Union side.

Panorama of the Dundee Ice Arena.

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