Ward could be out for a month
Edinburgh 46, King's Lynn 45TABLE-TOPPING Lynn suffered a double injury blow in Saturday night's Premier League defeat at reigning champions Edinburgh.
Edinburgh 46, King's Lynn 45
TABLE-TOPPING Lynn suffered a double injury blow in Saturday night's Premier League defeat at reigning champions Edinburgh.
Young hot shot Darcy Ward and Danish reserve Jan Graversen were both forced to withdraw from the meeting - leaving the duo major doubts for tonight's Premier Trophy semi final, first leg at Workington.
World U21 finalist Ward - nursing a back injury in recent weeks - slammed into the top boards in his second ride and was ruled out of the contest.
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Graversen had already departed a heat earlier after picking up grip down the back straight. Rob Lyon's men battled on despite the numerical disadvantage for the final ten heats and almost snatched a miracle result with back-to-back maximums at the business end.
American ace Ryan Fisher gated sharply in the opener with Aaron Summers holding off Ward's desperate late charge for an early home max.
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Kozza Smith locked up exiting turn two in the reserves to allow Summers a sniff - Lynn's all action Aussie squeezed out of the points as Byron Bekker cashed in on his Monarchs' home debut.
Lynn's main man Emiliano Sanchez dictated the next to trigger a Stars' fightback. Graversen smashed into the fence down the back straight in heat four after a sharp trap only to defer to Michal Makovsky. Graversen's heavy spill forced a lengthy stoppage before confirmation the Dane was unable to continue. Ward poured on the power in the next but clipped the fence on his opening lap. Lynn's talented teen limped back to the pits and out of the meeting.
The outgunned Linus Eklof minimised the damage with a smooth trap to fend off Matthew Wethers.
Fisher lined up Tomas Topinka before swerving underneath around the top boards - Lynn's skipper foiling Andrew Tully on the next lap.
Lynn bravely moved back within four points at half way after Sanchez and Chris Schramm double teamed one-time Stars' guest Michal Rajkowski with Summers a mere spectator.
Edinburgh responded with Eklof and Smith unable to threaten the improving Wethers. The Aussie landed a quick fire double in heat nine after reeling in the fast-starting Smith.
Sanchez veered wide in the next but team mate Schramm reacted quickest to lead home Fisher. Eklof took the scenic route to square heat 11 but Schramm's exclusion in heat 12 handed Edinburgh the initiative - Smith splitting the Monarchs' duo.
Lone ranger Topinka claimed the next to signal a last ditch assault from Lyon's depleted squad. Sanchez pocketed the penultimate race before shadowing Topinka in the finale to clinch a well deserved losing league point to extend Lynn's lead at the top of the standings to three points.
Monarchs: Fisher 10, Wethers 13+1, Tully 5+1, Rajkowski 6+1, Summers 8+3, Bekker 4+2.
Stars: Ward 1, Eklof 7, Schramm 5+1, Sanchez 13+1, Topinka 11, Smith 7+2, Graversen 1.