Swindon star Sam says he’ll be fit for Phoenix
5:30am Thursday 3rd April 2014 in By Michael Reeves, Deputy sports editor
SAM Bullas insists that he will be fighting fit for the EPL play-off finals this weekend.
The Swindon Wildcats star sustained a blow to his left ankle during the first-leg of their quarter-final clash with Milton Keynes Lightning in the first period.
And while the 23-year-old came back out to play in the second and third period of that 3-2 defeat on Saturday, Bullas was unable to take to the ice 24 hours later.
The former Nottingham Panther had to watch from the sidelines, while being supported by a crutch, as Cats claimed a dramatic 3-1 victory over Lightning at the Skydome in Coventry to book a semi-final date with Manchester Phoenix this Saturday .
But having had his ankle X-rayed, which showed no break, Bullas is confident that the swelling will have gone down in time for the weekend.
“Obviously, I wasn’t great shape for the second and third period of the first-leg against Milton Keynes, but because I hadn’t taken my boot off there was no place for it swell,” the forward told the Adver.
“The next day was a different story. I tried to put my boot on and I was really struggling it swollen quite badly - my ankle had doubled in size.
“The good news is that it isn’t broken. I’m seeing the physio and I’m confident that I’ll be fine for the weekend.”
Wilcats go into Saturday afternoon’s clash with Manchester knowing that they are the only side to shut out the EPL champions, who scored 19 more goals than anyone else in the division.
And it is that 2-0 success at the Link Centre last month that will give Bullas and his team-mates confidence of upsetting the odds.
“Shutting them out was a big thing,” Bullas said.
“They have scored a lot of goals this season.
“Stevie Lyle was unbelievable that night - he has been all season, and he will be again this weekend.
“But beating them at our place shows what we are capable of, it proves that we can beat them.”
Cats go into the finals weekend in Coventry on the back of eight wins from nine matches, including a seven-game winning streak.
And while admitting that they have the form which will have Manchester, Guildford Flames and Basingstoke Bison wary of, Bullas knows the team have to focus on the job at hand.
“You have to respect Manchester, they won the league, but we can’t give them too much respect,” Bullas said.
“I don’t think that they will fear us given the run that we have been on, but it just shows the level that we can play.”