Arab Cup blog: Breaking the ice with team-mates
PUBLISHED: 09:00 03 April 2018
Archant London sports reporter and former London Raiders forward Jacob Ranson is guesting for Algerian side HC Alger Corsaires at the 2018 Arab Cup in Abu Dhabi and writing a blog about the experience.
The first day was spent relaxing after next to no sleep the night before.
The sun was beaming down as early as 8am so I went to sit round the pool while I was waiting for my room to be prepared.
The funny thing is time seems to be no object here as I was told to head back at 11am.
I wandered back to reception at that time from the pool to find out my room was still not ready.
At 12pm I headed back once again to then realise the booking was all inaccurate and had to sort all of that out before eventually getting into my room.
After unpacking and watching some camel racing on TV I went back down to lay in the sun for a few hours ahead of training.
When 4.30pm came I was ready and down in the lobby to meet the team.
Two buses pulled up and we threw our kit on one and jumped on the other.
I slowly chatted to all of the team throughout the bus ride and in the changing room and it wasn’t very straight forward as most spoke French.
We took to the ice for a light skate, shooting pucks, passing and getting our feet going.
Before working our way into some 3-on-1 and 3-on-2 situations to practice moving up the ice and playing as a team.
The ice rink was really nice, the ice was good and the stands looked lovely, and most importantly it was good to skate out some jet lag and cobwebs.
When we arrived back to the hotel after everyone changed and got back on the bus to arrive a meeting time for dinner.
An 8pm meet for dinner turned into 9pm by the time everyone was downstairs in the lobby.
Lots of French talk flew round the dinner table as I tried finding out teams and countries everyone played in.
Once dinner finished I opted to get some sleep after none the night before so I could get up and set off for Sheikh Zayed this morning.