SWINDON Wildcats could look to live stream more of their fixtures in the future after a hugely successful trial throughout the recent Spring Cup.

Over seven weekends, five hockey-starved teams face each other in a round robin tournament that decided the inaugural Spring Cup champions as part of the NIHL’s Return to Play process.

The fixtures were held behind closed doors at various locations and streamed into the homes of thousands of supporters worldwide via TicketCo Media Services HD quality pay-per-view live streaming service.

Sheffield Steeldogs ran out emphatic winners of the competition, winning all 12 of their fixtures to top the table with 24 points out of 24. Telford Tigers finished second with the Wildcats in third ahead of Bees IHC and Raiders IHC.

The competition marked a major milestone in UK ice hockey’s journey to return to normal more than a year after the sport last welcomed fans into arenas.

But the Spring Cup’s success has helped hockey point towards a digital future with Swindon now exploring the option to monetise fixtures via live streaming in addition to revenue gained from fans physically attending games.

Steve Nell, Wildcats’ General Manager, said: “We’ve witnessed first-hand the power of live streaming and its ability to help us engage with supporters around the world.

“We are working hard to develop our live-streaming model so supporters unable to travel to the Link Centre to watch matches for health, transport or financial reasons can enjoy supporting the Wildcats from home even when Covid-19 restrictions ease.

“We are an inclusive club that has community engagement at our heart, so it’s only right we make our club as accessible to everyone as possible.

“I’d like to congratulate Sheffield Steeldogs for their Spring Cup success and all participating clubs and their staff for leading by example as ice hockey in the UK takes its first steps towards normality.”