Welsh ice hockey forwards Ben Davies and Phil Hill have been sharpening their skills at an NHL training camp in Toronto.
Cardiff-born Davies and Hill joined Cardiff Devils team-mates Mac Faulkner and Chris Blight in Canada to prepare for the Elite League season which starts over the first weekend of September.
The training camp has involved of off-ice fitness work, on-ice shooting practice against NHL goalies and full skating sessions.
There have also been games played most evenings with Davies and Hill joining Winnipeg Jets NHL forward Bryan Little on a line.
“Ben and Phil have been working out every day,” says Devils bench coach Neil Francis.
“They come back to the UK this weekend and tell me they feel really sharp because of the work they have done.”
While Devils import players, along with Davies and Hill, have been working on their fitness in North America, player-coach Gerad Adams and those players based in Wales, including import power forward Max Birbraer, have been preparing off-ice at the Fitness Factory gymnasium in Cardiff plus skating at Cardiff Bay Arena.
Canadian defenceman Mark Smith has already arrived back in Wales for the 2013-14 Elite League season, while Davies, Hill, Faulkner and Blight fly in from Toronto this Sunday.
New signings Brad Plumton and Adam Ross also fly in this Sunday, from Calgary, while former NHL goaltender Dan LaCosta arrives in the UK from New Brunswick, while Tyson Marsh and Andrew Conboy are due in early next week.
Devils then play their first challenge match at Coventry Blaze next Wednesday and hope to have a full team for that clash at the Sky Dome.
The first home game for Devils is against Danish elite club Esbjerg on Saturday, August 31 (7pm), while Coventry are visitors on Wednesday, September 4 (7.30pm).
Both of those matches will be played at Cardiff Bay Arena.