SWINDON Wildcats player-coach Aaron Nell says safety had to be the priority after the opening leg of the Autumn Cup final away at Basingstoke Bison was postponed yesterday.

With several of the Swindon players struggling to get to the Link Centre for training on Thursday night and a concern surrounding the venue in Hampshire, Nell says it was the right decision to call off the encounter.

“We were looking forward to the game but we looked at the weather and it just isn’t worth it for anyone to make the trip,” said Nell.

“It’s was all up to Basingstoke, really. We needed to make sure that we and our fans could get their safely, but the car park and getting into the building would have made that pretty difficult.

“We’ve been waiting for the game for a while. Not everyone was at training on Thursday because of the weather.

“It would have been a tough one if we did play but it is what it is.”

The first lef will now take place in Basingstoke next Friday, with the return in Swindon on March 16.

This evening, the Cats turn their attentions to league action in NIHL South One when they host Bracknell Bees at the Link Centre and Nell is confident the game will beat the elements.

While it is frustrating to have a game postponed, Nell acknowledges tonight’s home fixture is a good thing, as the Swindon are without a game on Sunday.

“I’m confident our home game will take place. I’ve had a look at the forecast and that looks like it is getting better and our car park is better too,” he added.

“Bison’s car park is on a hill, so that is why it would have been so difficult to play the game.

“We had players in for training on Thursday and we will prepare for the home game like we would for any other fixture.

“You never want to go a whole weekend without a game. We are confident it will happen.”

Ahead of tonight’s game, Nell has been handed an injury boost as teenager Jordan Kelsall is deemed fit enough to feature as he returns from a month out with a leg injury.

Edgars Bebris may also play after his game penalty from last Saturday was down-graded, meaning he feature at the Link Centre.

Toms Rutkis may also take part, should he be given clearance by the Cardiff Devils.