Sheffield Steelers' 600-match man is back next season

Steelers' 600-game '˜old school' captain will lead the club next season, after signing a new deal with the club.

Thursday, 3rd March 2016, 5:00 am
Jonathan Phillips - Sheffield Steelers captain

Jonathan Phillips will compete in his 11th season for Sheffield next year after the club confirmed he had signed another one year contract.

Head coach Paul Thompson said: “Jonno brings so much leadership and he’ always positive. He doesn’t take any nonsense, this is his club, a bit like Jason Hewitt, they will stand up and tell people if they don’t think they are pulling their weight.

“You need people like that on your team. People like them are going out of the game because no one likes to offend anyone anymore but if you’re going to win then sometimes you have to offend people and he isn’t afraid to do that.”

The Welsh winger does not come over as a demonstrative type, but that can be misleading, says the coach.

“Some question him because they think he is a quiet guy but he’s not. He talks when he needs to talk and he leads this club on the ice, off the ice as well as being a great connection between the team and the coaching staff.

“He is an unsung hero for this club.

“I remember Jonno signing for the Steelers 11 years ago – then he was part of the new generation of British players, now I guess he is one of the old guard. He has won so much since he has been here and been such a huge part of what the club has achieved.

“If we are building a core group here then Jonathan Phillips is right in the middle of that core.”

Phillips has been awarded a testimonial by the Steelers to mark his incredible service.

“I’m delighted to have re-signed” the skipper said.

“I don’t want to go anywhere, this is my home and this is my club. I don’t want to turn up at any other rink in the morning and put any other shirt on. I have to thank Paul for having the trust in me to re-sign me and also to Tony Smith for allowing me a testimonial. As a player to be awarded such an honour by his club is something that means a lot to me.

“Years service, games played, testimonials are all very nice but what really matters when you hang your skates up is what you’ve won. It’s what this club has been about from the day I arrived. I hope I have helped continue that tradition. I want it to continue this year, next and after as well.”