Kingston Cobras opening fixture off the 2016 season sees them face off against Solihull Vikings at Silverblades Solihull.
Solihull Vikings are a team synonymous with rec hockey in the UK. A rec side steeped in history they were founded in 1987 by supporters of Solihull Barons, wanting to give the sport a go, the team is still going strong 28 years later.
Cobras and Vikings have always enjoyed a competitive rivalry with the two sides dominating the Summer Cup league and playoffs in the early years of the competition. Solihull have also won Cobras Tournament and RecFest.
The formation of Solihull Barons in ENL2 saw a number of Vikings roster move up to play at the higher level. Despite losing a large chunk of their roster, Vikings still qualified for the Summer Cup playoffs the following season.
Last season saw Solihull Vikings finish runners up in the Summer Cup. Having qualified as third seed, they beat Durham Dragons in the playoff semi-finals, before losing to Whitley Bay in the final.
Vikings hold both records for biggest winning margin vs Cobras winning 10-2 at home and at Hull Arena (16-5)
Cobras last defeat away to Solihull came in 2011 losing 11-8. Since then they have won 6-4 – 2012, 8-7 – 2013, 8-3-2014 and in 2015 registered their biggest winning margin at Solihull 13-5.
Kingston will be icing some new faces and the trip to Solihull will provide a stiff opening test.