EPL ICE HOCKEY: Manchester Phoenix have announced another two players to their roster. Utility player Ben Wood put pen to paper for another year in Phoenix colours, and British forward Andy McKinney has joined from Elite League club Hull Stingrays.

McKinney, 21, started last season with EPL side Telford Tigers, before joining Stingrays. He played 42 games in the Elite League for Hull, scoring four goals and racking up 107 penalty minutes.

Six foot, 190 lbs McKinney is a tough, uncompromising young forward who will bring toughness and grit to the Phoenix line-up in the coming season.

McKinney said: “I was really pleased to get a call from Tony Hand. I thought about it over a weekend and decided to sign up. I play a physical game and hopefully I can help Phoenix to some trophies next season.”

Tony Hand said: “Andy will be an excellent addition to the team. He skates well and is not scared to drop the gloves if the situation warrants it. He is a different type of player than we have had previously but I think we now need Andy’s physical type of game on the roster.”

Macclesfield-born utility player Ben Wood, 24, has committed to another year in Phoenix colours. This will be Wood’s fifth year with the team and his versatility and ability to play both forward and defence makes him an important part of the squad.

Wood said: ”When Tony asked me to come back, it was a no brainer. The location is perfect, it is a great club with a really good locker room atmosphere. I had no hesitation in coming back for another season.”

Hand added: “Ben had his best season for the club last year and, as a player who can play both defence and forward, he is an integral part of our squad. He grew in confidence last season and I thought he did very well. His fitness is second to none and his growing maturity has also made him a great asset in the locker room. Very pleased to have him back.”