Crunch time for Stingrays for Capitals visit

HULL STINGRAYS know if they can square their head-to-head series with Edinburgh Capitals, it will put them in the boxseat to make the Elite League play-offs.

Hull Stingrays player-coach Omar Pacha. Picture: Arthur Foster.

A mixed weekend saw Omar Pacha’s team return from Scotland with two points, going down 6-1 at Dundee Stars after winning Fife Flyers 3-1 the previous night.

Dundee are the only team guaranteed not to make the post-season after a wretched campaign, while Hull are involved in a four-way battle with form team Coventry Blaze, Fife and and Edinburgh for the three remaining play-off spots.

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Coventry have won their last six league games to put them in pole position to finish sixth overall, meaning it is likely to be just two places up for grabs for Hull and their Gardiner Conference rivals.

At the moment Fife and Hull are favourites to make the post-season, Edinburgh four points adrift of eighth-placed Hull with Fife a further point ahead.

But, as Hull have found out all too often this season, you can’t write Edinburgh off, the Capitals having won four of the seven games between the two sides this season ahead of tonight’s final encounter.

“This is a huge game for us,” said player-coach Pacha. “It’s the difference between being two points ahead of Edinburgh or six.

“We will be short again and we are going to have to make a few adjustments and while it is frustrating to be picking up injuries at this time of year other teams are playing short too so there is no complaining from me.

“It is going to be a battle and they know this game is massive for them too. This game could decide the play-offs outcome for both teams.

“If we can move six points ahead of Edinburgh it is going to be a great position to be in.”

After tonight, Hull face a tough run-in starting on Saturday with a home game against newly-crowned Challenge Cup Champions Cardiff Devils, who are currently third and hoping to pip Sheffield Steelers and Braehead Clan to the regular season title.

A trip to Coventry follows on Sunday before the final weekend of the regular season sees them on the road to Braehead and Coventry.

PREVIOUSLY ....

Sep 13: Hull 2 Edinburgh 5

Oct 18: Hull 2 Edinburgh 0

Nov 30: Edinburgh 3 Hull 2 (SO)

Dec 27: Hull 3 Edinburgh 2

Dec 28: Edinburgh 3 Hull 6

Jan 21: Edinburgh 4 Hull 3

Feb 22: Edinburgh 5 Hull 4 (SO)