BLACKBURN Hawks coach Matt Darlow says his team is going back to basics to have maximum impact this season.

Darlow’s new-look team secured a fantastic 5-2 opening day win over Billingham last Sunday.

That should give them confidence for this weekend’s double header when they face the Stars again tomorrow (6.30pm), this time away, after a home clash against Whitley Warriors this evening (5.45pm).

And while Darlow says both matches will be tough, he’s backing his side’s straight-forward approach to pay off again.

“We’re striving to be really effective,” he said.

“We’re not bothered about looking flashy, we’re not bothered about fancy skating patterns - we’re looking to play very simple up-and-down ice hockey and within that we’re going to be as creative as we can be on attack.

“We give teams different angles that maybe they’re not used to.

“We just want to get to danger areas on the ice and score goals - that’s the big thing for us and it comes from good basics.”

Darlow admits that Billingham put in a good performance last weekend before Hawks got on top thanks to Mikko Sierman’s goal on debut.

And he was pleased the Finn and fellow import Patrik Nyman both opened their accounts at the first possible opportunity.

He said: “Mikko is a very effective import. He’s got good all-round abilities, but he’s also really straight-forward in the fact that he does simple things right.

“We created offence on that line all night and he went to the net, picked up a rebound and scored.

“Patrik has got a bit more flair. He’s a flow player with a high level of skill.

“He scored and it was just a simple thing, shooting the puck. There’s nothing fancy about the goal - worked it around well on the powerplay, came up top and he fired it very, very hard.

“You can have all the skill level in the world like those guys have got, but when you do the simple things right you create chances.” Darlow added: “Billingham played well last weekend.

“They are a pressure team with three lines that can do damage, and they’ll want to play us back.

“It’s a difficult place to go but it’s always good fun up there. You know the crowd are going to get behind them and hate us.”

Whitley Warriors suffered a stinging 9-2 defeat at the hands of Solway Sharks on Sunday, but Darlow isn’t jumping to any early conclusions.

"People have written the them off,” he said. “They have lost one or two key players, but they’ve still got a core there that should compete every single day.

“They had a freak one against Solway, I don’t buy into that at all as a result. I know Solway are good but Whitely didn’t have any pre-season games and that explains a lot.

“They are a tough squad and have some powerful guys.

“There’s a hype around this game, but it’s hockey not hype for me and let’s just get on with it and see what happens.”

Hawks netminder Stuart Ashton is fully fit after recovering from an ankle injury, and Darlow expects the Arena crowd to be as boisterous as they were last weekend.

He added: “Our crowd will be the seventh man this season.

“They were queuing around the block and when the first goal went in the roof came off the place. It’s a special atmosphere in that building.”