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Tom Watkins Celebrates Milestone: 700 Games at the Helm of Telford Tigers

In the world of ice hockey, longevity and success are rare achievements for any coach. Tom Watkins, Head Coach of Telford Tigers, today etches his name into the records of hockey history as he reaches his 700th game in charge. A testament to his dedication, leadership, and passion for the sport, Watkins has become a cornerstone figure for the Telford Tigers and the broader hockey community.

Tom Watkins’ coaching journey with Telford Tigers began back in 2011 where his first game in charge was a pre-season friendly against Swindon Wildcats. Little did Watkins know that this game would lead him to the outstanding achievement of 700 games as Head Coach.

Over the years, Watkins has not only witnessed the evolution of the Telford Tigers but has actively shaped the team into a formidable force within the hockey world, leading his roster to an average win rate of 55.5% and winning a total of 388 games.

During his time as Telford Tigers Head Coach, Watkins has also spells as GB U20 assistant coach, GB U20 Head Coach and GB Senior Men’s Team Assistant coach. He has also coached a total of 21 Telford Tigers players who have represented GB U20’s while playing under Watkins’ lead.

His coaching style is marked by a perfect blend of strategy, mentorship, and a genuine love for the game. Watkins’ ability to connect with his players on a personal level has fostered a sense of camaraderie and unity within the team, contributing to their success on and off the ice.

As Watkins reached his 700th game in charge, it’s impossible to ignore the numerous accomplishments and milestones that have punctuated his coaching career. Under his guidance, Telford Tigers have secured league titles, playoff victories, cup titles including;

2014-2015

  • Bradfield Brewery Cup Winners
  • Red Hockey Cup Winners
  • EPIHL Champion
  • EPIHL Cup Champion
  • U20 WJC (D2A) Gold Medal
  • World Championship (D1B) Silver Medal

2015-2016

  • U20 WJC (D1B) Bronze Medal
  • World Championship (D1B) Silver Medal

2016-2017

  • EPIHL Champion
  • World Championship (D1B) Gold Medal

2017-2018

  • NIHL 1 North Playoff Champion

2019-2020

  • NIHL Champion
  • NIHL Cup Champion

2021-2022

  • NIHL Champion

During the 2021-22 season, the 45-year old was also awarded the NIHL Coach of The Year Award, presented to him after winning back-to-back National league titles.

Watkins’ achievement is not only a personal milestone but also a cause for celebration for the Telford community. As a coach he has become a beloved figure among fans, and his commitment to Telford Tigers has forged a strong bond between the team and its supporters.

As he continues to guide the team into the future, Watkins remains a central figure in the Telford hockey story, leaving an indelible mark on the players, the community, and the sport as a whole.

The club would like to Congratulate Tom on his remarkable achievement.

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