Key man Tendler remains doubtful for Stingrays

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TOP scorer Jereme Tendler remains doubtful for Hull Stingrays’ crucial Elite League double-header against Dundee Stars this weekend.

The 28-year-old Canadian – who has plundered 31 goals in 46 games so far – missed last weekend’s defeats to Coventry Blaze and Sheffield Steelers with an upper-body injury. His possible further absence will be keenly felt by a Stingrays side looking to put added distance between themselves and Dundee in the race for the post-season play-offs.

Hull head to Scotland tonight before returning to East Yorkshire to welcome Brent Hughes’s side in the return fixture. They will be hoping to improve on the 5-2 home defeat they suffered at the hands of the Stars last month.

Player-coach Sylvain Cloutier said he would be looking for the team who competed hard in the 3-0 defeat at Steelers’ last Saturday rather than the disjointed side who capitulated to Coventry in an 8-2 home defeat the previous night.

“I actually thought we were the better team in Sheffield,” said Cloutier. “It’s that kind of performance that I want every night between now and the end of the season.

“But if we play like we did against Coventry, then we’re going to have problems.”

Ryan Finnerty’s Steelers are in a double header of their own with fourth-placed Coventry the opponents.

Paul Thompson brings his team into the Motorpoint Arena tonight before the return match tomorrow at the Skydome.

Steelers will go into the weekend without the influential player-assistant coach Ashley Tait, who injured a foot during last Sunday’s 4-2 defeat at home to current leaders Belfast Giants.

In the Englsih Premier League, Sheffield Steeldogs will be hoping to close the gap on title rivals Manchester Phoenix tomorrow (5.30pm).

Andre Payette’s fourth-placed side are just three points behind their rivals – who currently lie second – with a game in hand.