Ultimate Windows sponsored Billingham Stars

ULTIMATE WINDOWS-sponsored Billingham Stars are tonight delighted to reveal the first of their import players as Czech forward Tomáš Rubeš joins up with the squad.

Rubeš, 23, makes the move north after spending last season with Milton Keynes Thunder, his first experience of British hockey. He spent his youth playing for junior sides based in and around Karlovy Vary in the West of the Czech Republic close to the German border, featuring in the MHL (the KHL’s junior league) with HC Karlovy Vary before departing his home country for a taste of life across the Pond. Rubeš would spend two seasons the States with Oklahoma City Jr. Blazers of the Western States Hockey League (WSHL), racking up 124 points (54 goals) in 109 games and helping his team finish first and second in the League over the two campaigns. Rubeš returned to Europe for short stints back home and also in France with Toulouse Blagnac Hockey Club before signing on for the Thunder last year. Rubeš was the standout player as he top-scored for a struggling Milton Keynes outfit, 44 points (24 goals) posted for a team that managed just 102 goals all season demonstrates how valuable Rubeš was. Click here to view his stats.

Rubeš comes to a Stars outfit needing to find goals this season themselves, and we’re delighted that he took the time to speak to us ahead of his unveiling:

Welcome to Billingham! What made you decide to come to play in the North East of England? Why did you choose Billingham Stars?

"Thank you very much! I knew after last season that I wanted to stay in UK for sure. I heard great things about Billingham. When I had a really positive call with Allen I made my decision to play for Billingham. It was pretty easy choice for me after that call."

You have played hockey in a few different countries, including last year in Milton Keynes - did you know anything about British ice hockey before you arrived and how did you find playing with the Thunder?

"I heard good things about British hockey from my friends who played in the NIHL in previous seasons. As we can see Team GB moved to the top division of the World Championships and they did really well, it's no coincidence. So I wanted move to the UK last season and I got an offer from Thunder."

How would you describe yourself to anyone who hasn’t seen you play?

"I always try hard - I will try do my best to put Stars back to the top, as an import forward everyone expects me to score goals and make plays for my teammates!"

What are you looking forward to the most?

"I can't wait to for the season finally start again after a long summer!"

Do you have any personal goals for this season?

"With the new League structure I think Stars have really good chance to be the top team in the League again like they used to be before. I want to be successful and play at the top!"

What do you enjoy away from ice hockey? What do you hope to do with your time in Billingham when you're not playing?

"Mostly I enjoy experiencing different cultures and visiting new places. I will bring with me some fishing rods, I have a UK fishing license. So I will be probably be fishing in my free time."

Welcome to Billingham, Tomáš – we look forward to seeing you at the Forum very soon!

The Stars will be making more player announcements in the coming days and weeks, as well as news about our Juniors.

Want to get involved? Ice hockey is growing in popularity like never before, with it’s profile raised due to the success of Great Britain gaining promotion to – and consequently staying in – the Elite group at the World Championships. The Stars offer a variety of sponsorship packages that can provide excellent value-for-money advertising and brand presence for local firms – get in touch with allen@flavellwelding.co.uk for more details.

Can YOU house a hockey player next season? The club is looking for anyone who can offer accommodation from August to April next year. Please contact allen@flavellwelding.co.uk if you think you may be able to help.