A YOUNG ice hockey star has been selected for Scotland, and won a top award as a result.

When Auchinleck Academy pupil Thomas Mangan is not delivering the weekly Cumnock Chronicle in Ochiltree you will find him at the Kilmarnock Galleon ice rink practising ice hockey.

Goalie Thomas has been playing for Kilmarnock Junior Ice Hockey club since he was 9 years old and his impressive performances delighted to be capped for Scotland this season.

At Easter, Thomas travelled to Paris with the Scotland under 15 team to compete at the 'Tournoi International Minimes' tournament.

The competition was fierce and the team faced opposition from European teams from various regions of France and the Czech Republic.

Scotland played hard and went on to claim glory. Thomas put up a string of impressive performance as he ended the tournament without conceding a single goal.

For the feat, he was awarded the best goalie of the tournament - the first time this award has gone to a Scot.

Thomas said: "I've been playing since I was about nine years old. My sister was a skater and I would go along. I always saw the ice hockey players and thought they looked cool. My dad took me to train with them one day and I was the best skater there."

Thomas is harbouring a dream to eventually go and play in the big time as he eyes a spot in the NHL and a move to hockey hot bed, Canada when he is older.

Thomas is set to appear for Scotland once again on international duty at a tournament in England at the end of the month.

Thomas' mum, Geraldine said: "We would like to wish Thomas and the Scotland team the very best of luck when they travel to Sheffield at the end of April to compete at the prestigious EIHA Conference Tournament."

Thomas added: "I really appreciate everything my mum and dad have done driving me all over the country over the years. Without them I wouldn't be able to train."

The four day event in Sheffield will see 400 elite players from Scotland, Northern Ireland, England and Wales come together and compete.