SWINDON WILDCATS: Pekkarinen excited at new experience
THE 'new experience' of playing abroad convinced Aku Pekkarinen that Swindon was the right place for him in 2013/14.
Finn Pekkarinen has arrived at Wildcats to ply his trade outside his homeland for the first time in his career.
The 28-year-old defenceman is the only new import on the roster at the Link Centre so far and he is relishing the task of patrolling the blueline in the fast-approaching EPL campaign.
“I'm really excited to be here. It's the first time I've ever played abroad and I'm really looking forward to working hard this season,” he said.
“I came to England because I wanted to try a new experience and see how it worked in another league and country.
“I have been more of a stay-at-home defenceman in the past but I think I'm going to also play further forward now.
“Of course I am looking to score some points, but it is always been about the team and that comes first for me, it's more about the logo on your chest than the number on your back.”
Pekkarinen's path into British life has been eased by the knowledge that he will play alongside his fellow countryman, Henri Sandvik, at Wildcats.
The Finnish duo are living together a matter of minutes from the Link Centre and Pekkarinen says his new housemate has given him an introduction as to what to expect in the EPL.
“I only know a few guys that play in this league and at Swindon there's Henri who I've played against,” said Pekkarinen.
“He knows the teams that play in this league having been here last season and that helps.”
Pekkarinen is set to make his debut for Wildcats in their opening challenge game against visitors Slough tonight.
Swindon have no injury problems ahead of the clash.
Ryan Aldridge's men skated together on the new ice pad at the Link Centre for the first time on Sunday.
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