THE Bespoke Guardians Swindon Wildcats have announced Russ Cowley will return to the Link Centre for one final season before hanging up his skates in 2023/24.

A legend of British ice hockey, Cowley began his career at Swindon Chill in the 1999-2000 campaign before moving on to enjoy spells with Coventry Blaze, Cardiff Devils, Basingstoke Bison, and Milton Keynes Lightning prior to his return home.

He will also go down as one of the most capped GB players of all time, competing at 12 World Championships and earning one bronze and three silver as well as a gold medal at his final tournament in Belfast in 2017. He also iced in two Olympic qualifying groups in 2008 and 2015.

The 39-year-old posted a 70-point season last term - the most productive of his career - at Swindon but missed out on the club's play-off campaign due to injury.

He will return for one last year as Swindon look to bounce back from an underwhelming campaign.

Speaking to, Cowley said said: "I’m delighted to be coming back to Swindon for one more year. I started my hockey career here and it only feels right this is where I ice for my final season.

"Last year was great and I really enjoyed my time with the club, and I’m looking forward to getting back on the ice very soon.

"On a personal level, it was a successful season but really difficult to miss out on the helping the team on the ice in the playoffs, and I’m coming back with some unfinished business.

"With the team Aaron [Nell - head coach] has put together, there’s no reason we can’t be successful next year. Have a good summer Wildcats fans and I’ll see you in September."

Meanwhile, player-coach Nell added: "Russ was a huge part of our team last year both on and off the ice.

"Once we knew he wanted to play for another season, it was an easy decision to bring him back to Swindon.

"On the ice, he was tremendous for us and scored some invaluable points. He was big on the special teams, and he had some really good games for us last year.

"In the locker room, he was a leader, and with some more young guys on the team this year what they’ll learn from players like Russ will be incredibly valuable to them.

"With Stevie [Whitfield] and Russ bowing out at the end of the season, we’ll be working incredibly hard to make sure they walk away with a trophy in hand."