Ice Hockey: Cardiff are confident: Benson and Hedges Cup final

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The Independent Online
SCOTLAND play Wales on English ice with the winner carrying off the Benson and Hedges Cup when Cardiff Devils meet Murrayfield Racers today at the Sheffield Arena.

For one player, loyalty will be torn. Paul Heavey, captain of the Devils, used to be a Racers stalwart. He is aware of the danger that the brothers and his ex-team mates, Paul and Tony Hand, pose in defence and attack respectively. 'But we've got Ian Cooper back on defence after being injured in a pre-season friendly and that will give us an edge,' he said. 'It will be a low-scoring game with the margin no more than two goals. It will be a game where defence is crucial with both sides looking for the odd break.'

This is the first meeting between Racers and Devils this season. Both lost just once in the Cup on their way to the final and are currently tied on League points. Racers will certainly want to do well if only to forget the embarrassment of the last meeting between the two sides.

In the Heineken championship semi-final at Wembley in April, Devils beat Racers 9-0 and went on to add the championship to the inaugural Benson and Hedges Cup and League title. History looks to be on Cardiff's side: they have won seven of the last 10 matches between the two sides.