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Raiders defenceman Cooper keen to land fourth-place in the league with two victories

PUBLISHED: 14:00 02 March 2018

Raiders forwards Jake Sylvester and Brandon Ayliffe on the attack against Peterborough (Pic: John Scott)

Raiders forwards Jake Sylvester and Brandon Ayliffe on the attack against Peterborough (Pic: John Scott)

Archant

London Raiders defenceman Jack Cooper admits its crunch time for the club as they look to cap off a successful season by finishing fourth in the table.

The Romford-based club face a tricky weekend as they take to the road and make the trip to Peterborough Phantoms on Saturday before travelling to Bracknell Bees the following evening.

The 21-year-old is under no illusions of the task they face this weekend and in their final four matches to seal a top-half finish.

“These last four matches are huge for us,” Cooper said.

“We want to get the best playoff run possible for us so we need to get as many points as possible.”

The former Albany School student revealed they want to get the Phantoms back after suffering a 6-1 defeat to them on home ice last weekend.

“It’s going to be tough weekend for us but I believe we can win both games if we play the way I know we can.

“It was disappointing to lose last weekend, especially at home.

“We started very slow and Peterborough made us pay.

“We need to play with a different attitude from what we had last weekend and get a win to make that fourth spot easier to keep.”

Cooper praised how Slava Koulikov’s men play and admits they must pile the pressure on them to be successful.

“Peterborough are a good team, they work well with each other and are a lot more relaxed on the puck, but like every team in the league, ex-epl or not, if you put the right pressure on them, you will cause turn overs.”

Sunday, the Raiders do battle with the Bees, who they’re battling with to finish fourth in the table and the defenceman believes it’s a must-win match.

“Bracknell on Sunday is a must win game for us,” he said.

“We need to secure them points to help us get fourth spot.

“We will more thank likely draw Bracknell in the play-offs so we need to set the tone Sunday with a win.”

The Bees could be without their leading scorer Frantisek Bakrlik who could be facing another lengthy suspension.

“Without Bakrlik in their team, that will give us a boost but one guy does not make a team.

“Just because they’re missing a key player, it doesn’t mean we can take them for granted, we still need to play hard and give them nothing to work with.”

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