Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Chilled out and Going Places; Geoff Egan Meets an Ipswich Man Who Prefers His Sport with Ice

Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Chilled out and Going Places; Geoff Egan Meets an Ipswich Man Who Prefers His Sport with Ice

Article excerpt

GROWING up in the '90s, the sporting heroes of most Ipswich boys were Matthew Hayden and Shane Webcke.

Anthony Kimlin looked up to them, but Hall of Fame ice hockey goaltender Patrick Roy sat alongside his Queensland-born heroes.

With the 22-year-old now the goaltender for the Australian national ice hockey team and named the top net minder in the Australian Ice Hockey League, it's hard to suggest Kimlin didn't pick the right role model.

Growing up in Yamanto Kimlin was like every other kid a he loved cricket, he loved rugby league a but he also loved ice hockey.

He started playing inline hockey at the Bundamba Skateaway before switching roller blades for ice skates.

For most people the prospect of having hardened rubber disks fired at you isn't particularly appealing.

aI don't know why I decided to play goalie,a Kimlin said.

aThey say all goalies are crazy. When you start everyone is a skater, but I saw the guys playing in goal, stopping shots and thought, a[approximately]Yeah, that's what I want to do'.a

Armoured with thick pads and wearing a heavy protective mask, even in the Australian league Kimlin regularly faces shots faster than 150kmh.

aIt's like stopping a Shoaib Akhtar ball with my body,a he laughed.

After being told he had the skills to play the game at a high level, Kimlin moved to Toronto when he was just 15. The timing coincided with his father being offered a transfer to the biggest city in Canada and the beating heart of ice hockey.

There he played in the highest level of junior ice hockey, competing against teenagers looking to be drafted into professional competitions including the National Hockey League.

Junior hockey in Canada is big business. There are five levels of junior leagues, from the top Canadian Hockey League that encompasses teams across the country, to provincial leagues Junior A, B, C and D. …

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