Witches win but don’t get the max

IPSWICH Witches recorded victory, but again failed to claim all three points at home to Eastbourne Eagles Thursday night.

IPSWICH Witches recorded victory, but again failed to claim all three points at home to Eastbourne Eagles Thursday night.

Although the win was welcome, there was a definite sense that picking up all three points by winning by more than six, was again missed, as the illness-hit Eagles battled hard to take a point back to Sussex.

There is little doubt changes need to be made to this Ipswich side if they are seriously going to challenge for the play-offs as the season progresses.

One look at the scorecharts again saw the opposition reserves outscore their Ipswich counterparts, while in the main body of the Witches side, Claus Vissing continues his disappointing run.

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The Witches seemed as though they may grab all three points when Robert Miskowiak produced a stunning ride in heat 13, passing Eagles No.1 Matej Zagar in wonderful style.

It was heroic stuff, but the Witches failed to capitalise and when Zagar won the final heat, although the Witches had won the meeting, they had failed to take maximum points.

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The Witches had hoped to hit the Eagles, who were thrashed at Poole on Wednesday night, hard early on.

But that never materialised, mainly thanks to the Eagles Simon Gustafsson, who was in inspired form in the opening third of the meeting.

After out-pacing both Witches in heat one, he duly won heat three and followed home partner Matej Zagar home in heat five.

It was inspiring stuff from the young Swede and only Danny King and Claus Vissing’s 5-1 maximum of their own in heat four kept the Witches in touch, as the Eagles took an early two-point lead.

The Witches appeared to be heading further behind in heat eight, until a dramatic last bend saw Olly Allen and Linus Sundstrom pass Dawid Lampart and Gustafsson respectively, to turn an Eagles 4-2 into a Witches 4-2.

Scott Nicholls did well to link up with Allen in heat 10 as the Witches nudged ahead.

Robert Miskowiak seized an engine when in second in heat 11, but Ipswich got their noses back in front after the Eagles pair of Chris Schramm and Lampart made a right mess of the first turn.

It was boiling up to a cracking finish and so it proved with Miskowiak’s efforts in heat 13.

But the Witches couldn’t kill the meeting off in heat 14 as Schramm and Cameron Woodward gated to victory.

Zagar did his bit in the final race and the Witches fans were left frustrated again.

Ipswich: S Nicholls 12+1, O Allen 7+1, D King 10, C Vissing 2+1, R Miskowiak 8+2, D Stachyra 4, L Sundstrom 4

Eastbourne: M Zagar 10, S Gustafsson 10+2, L Dryml 2, C Woodward 6+3, R/R, C Schramm 9, D Lampart 6+1

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