Witches blow! Allen out for another 10 days – Hawkins won’t rush Aussie ace back
- Credit: Picture: Steve Waller
Ipswich Witches boss Ritchie Hawkins says flying reserve Jake Allen is under no pressure to hurry back to fitness.
The Brisbane-born Aussie ace suffered a shoulder injury in a Supporters Cup clash with Poole at Foxhall almost a month ago.
And although he made a comeback for the Witches at Belle Vue recently, his shoulder is still far from fully fit - Allen is going to take another 10 days or so off.
Tomorrow night, the Witches entertain Swindon Robins in a Premiership clash at Foxhall Heath (7.30pm.)
"We have a plan for Jake and it is a sensible one," Hawkins said.
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"The shoulder needs more rest. He will target the Fours at Peterborough in 10 days or so for Scunthorpe, his Championship club. I think it only right he gets as good as fully fit.
"I know the fans will be disappointed, so are we, so is Jake.
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"He's made such a brilliant start to the season and has been so key for us. But he's a young rider (23 years old) and he has his whole career ahead of him.
"Bringing him back 70% fit is no good for him because he will stay at that level for months.
"We want him back as good as 100% and he can kick on."
Allen's place in the Witches team tomorrow night against a strong-looking Robins side is taken by Kyle Howarth, who rides for Wolves.
Howarth is a competent racer who is in the main body of the team at Wolves.
"We are happy to have Kyle with us," Hawkins said.
"He's a heat leader at Wolves and a good rider around Foxhall."
Swindon have started the season well as they look favourites to reach the Supporters Cup final and have picked up a good tally of league points so far.
The Robins sit sixth in the Premiership but have only raced six meetings, remaining unbeaten at home and having picked up a point on the road from three outings, including a losing bonus point in the Supporters' Cup at Foxhall earlier in the season.
""First and foremost, we want the win and the three points, but we can't be letting teams like Swindon taking a point off us as it could prove vital at the end of the season in the race for the play-offs," Hawkins added.
"We need to stop as many teams as we can from getting a point by winning by more than six and that will be vital for us.
"First job, get the win and second job, do it by seven points or more."