AARON Nell praised his players’ ability to weather Telford Tigers’ early storm at the Link Centre this evening, as Swindon Wildcats registered their first home victory of the season - a convincing 6-2 pre-season win.

Player-coach Nell himself put Wildcats one ahead in a difficult first period, before Polish import Tomasz Malasinski netted a middle-period brace to take the game away from the visitors – who were playing their first game of the season.

Nell also confirmed his brace in the second, before a pair of early goals courtesy of Henry Adams and Adam Taylor halved the visitors’ four-goal deficit.

Any possible concern among home supporters was quashed in the game’s concluding five minutes, though, as Toms Rutkis and Edgars Bebris netted deserved goals to confirm the 6-2 scoreline.

Nell was satisfied to pick up a first home win of the season – particularly with only a week remaining until London Raiders visit in the National League.

“Telford were strong in the first period and we rode our luck a bit – we were lucky to be ahead by a goal,” said Nell.

“We upped our game in the second and the third was a case of Telford upping their game again.

“Telford came out very fast, and they were missing their best defenceman so they will only get better.

“I was happy with how we survived Telford’s advances in the first period and our reaction in the second.”

Unlike Swindon, Telford have opted to complete one week of pre-season (two games) before starting their National League campaign.

For Nell, playing four games of hockey was always part of his plan. And he was pleased to see Wildcats’ energy levels remain at an appropriate level.

He added: “It’s important to get two weeks in, everything moving forward now is about next week.

“Sometimes the second week of pre-season can be difficult – that’s simply because you’re so pumped up for the first.

“We saw a bit of a dip in practice this week, but I’m happy with how we performed as a team.”

Wildcats travel to Telford tomorrow for the return fixture.