BRACKNELL Bees head coach Doug Sheppard has claimed certain incidents in last Saturday's match at his former club, Basingstoke Bison, were "classless" and "showed a complete lack of respect for our team," writes Dave Wright.

And he is hoping the English Ice Hockey Association will look into the matter.

Sheppard, who switched clubs last year and brought a number of players with him, said in a statement: “It’s a shame the weekend was overshadowed by incidents that occurred.

"If anyone wants to have a dig at me, I can take it, but the minute anyone starts taking a dig at our players and their families it certainly crosses the line.

"I feel Saturday was out of order, classless and showed a complete lack of respect for our team and the sport of ice hockey. I’d like to think the league will take the correct action in dealing with this situation."

Sheppard, who saw his side crash 6-2 after a below-par performance, did not go into details, but it appears he was upset about comments made over the public address system.

One Bees supporter described them as "inappropriate comments which were more than just banter – it was bullying."

The Basingstoke announcer, Daren Bavister, has since apologised, accepting he "misread a couple of situations and offended a minority of fans."

He added: "I regret my actions have upset people, it was not and never my intention."

Sheppard was also left disappointed by the Bees' performance on the night, admitting: "We were not good enough. I was a bit surprised as we have been in good form with wins over Swindon twice and Peterborough, but we just didn't play our game. It was disappointing and we have to make sure it doesn't happen again."

Bees are home twice this coming weekend to top-four rivals, with Peterborough the visitors on Saturday, when the face-off has been put back to 6.30pm, followed by the return against Basingstoke on Sunday (6pm).

"These are two massive games for the players and for the fans," said Sheppard.

The coach says injured team skipper Joe Baird remains very doubtful, but hopes he will be fit for the following weekend.