Hometown Bobby Streetly thrilled to be part of Leeds Chiefs adventure

DEFENCEMAN Bobby Streetly has more reason than most to be excited about bringing ice hockey to Leeds.

Born and raised in the city – a former pupil at Wortley High School – when Leeds Chiefs step out on to the ice for the first time at their new Elland Road rink in September, it will be a particularly special moment.

Given the lack of facilities in his hometown, Streetly spent his junior years at Bradford Bulldogs before making the step up to senior hockey with Blackburn Hawks, then in the third tier.

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Apart from two years on the Isle of Wight with Wightlink Raiders, it is across the Pennines at Lower Audley Street where he has played the majority of his career since and follows former Hawks team-mate and fellow Yorkshireman Luke Boothroyd back across the M62 to join the Chiefs for their NIHL National campaign which begins in mid-September.

“It’s exciting because ice hockey has been a long time coming to Leeds, especially at the level that it is going to be,” said Streetly. “It’s going to go down a lot better than people expect because nobody has ever seen anything like this sport in the city before.

“Apart from the two years when I was playing at Wightlink, I’ve lived in Leeds my whole life so I’ve waited for this moment for a long time.

“If we can prove to be a competitive team – which I believe we will be given the team Sam (Zajac, player-coach) has put together – then there is no reason why we can’t be competing for honours in the first-ever year.”

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Streetly joins the Chiefs with more than 200 NIHL One games under his belt, which combined with his desire to represent his city, made him an ideal candidate for Sam Zajac.

“Bobby is a local guy who is really excited to have the opportunity to represent his hometown team,” said the Chiefs’ player-coach.

“He’s a big body on the back end, strong in his own zone, makes a good first pass and can be relied upon to eat minutes every night.”

“At just 25 years old his best is yet to come. He’s going to be a big part of our leadership group.”

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