Ipswich Witches boss Chris Louis hails the character of his team after Glasgow Tigers are well beaten
- Credit: Picture: Steve Waller
Ipswich Witches 52 Glasgow Tigers 41
Ipswich Witches put a horrible week behind them with a stunning performance against high-flying Glasgow Tigers at Foxhall Stadium on Thursday night.
The Suffolk side even had to cope with losing Kyle Newman with an ankle injury in the first race, but they showed real grit to come through the severest of tests, just seven days after losing their unbeaten home record.
Led by Danny King and Rory Schlein, with Cameron Heeps to the fore, the Witches chipped away at the Tigers from the start and never let off.
Witches reserves Nathan Greaves and Connor Mountain were in top form and easily outscored their visiting opponents, while Justin Sedgmen, who was axed and re-instated in the space of a few hours on Sunday after a major Witches re-shuffle went wrong, was solid throughout.
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It was just what the doctor ordered for the Foxhall Heath club who had been left so embarrassed by their attempts to re-shuffle their team at the weekend.
And this could have gone horribly wrong, with Newman injured and Schlein being sick most of the night, the professionalism of the rest of the team, especially Sedgmen and Mountain, shone through.
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Newman and Richard Lawson were involved in a nasty first bend tumble that left Newman with a ankle injury. He took himself off to hospital for x-rays. In the re-run King won well with reserve Nathan Greaves battling well to hold Lawson off for third place.
Greaves was going to be a busy man with Newman out of the meeting and he roared past Tom Bacon in the reserves race. Worrall won the Tigers’ first race of the night in heat three before the Withes looked set to really pile on the misery as Schlein and Connor Mountain gated to the front. Mountain made a mistake on lap three as Aaron Summers swept past.
Heeps and Justin Sedgmen flew from the start in the next, but Lawson raced round Sedgmen, although the Witches continued to increase their lead and King and Greaves gained the home team’s fifth 4-2 of the evening.
The Witches led by 10 and Worrall was out for a tactical ride in heat seven.
Schlein made the start but Worrall was soon passed as Dan Bewley swept round Mountain and the Witches lead was halved. Nike Lunna won heat eight for the visitors and then Heeps brought the Foxhall crowd to their feet as he roared down the back straight past Summers and flew underneath him on turn three.
The Witches were giving it their all and King lowered Worrall’s colours in heat 10, as Schlein provided a masterclass of how to race turns one and two as he flew between Lawson and Lunna.
Heeps made a terrible gate in race 12, but fortunately Mountain didn’t and he held up Bacon, as Heeps got into second.
The Withes sealed the deal in heat 13 as Schlein and King hit the first bend side by side. The meeting was won and the Foxhall fans were joyous.
There was still time for King to complete his maximum, while Heeps packed up just half a lap from the end in heat 15 after his cut-out came adrift, with second place in sight. It was cruel on the young Aussie, but he can be proud of his night’s work.
As can the whole team – this was a crucial victory, make no bones about it.
The Witches are next in action on Sunday in the Championship 4’s, at Peterborough. The action starts at 2pm.
Ipswich: D King 14+1, K Newman 0, C Heeps 10, J Sedgmen 5+1, R Schlein 11, N Greaves 8+1, C Mountain 4+2
Glasgow: R Lawson 4, N Lunna 6+1, R Worrall 16, D Bewley 5+1, A Summers 8+1, T Bacon 2, J Smith 0.
1 King, Lunna, Greaves, Lawson 57.0 4-2
2 Greaves, Bacon, Mountain, Smith 59.5 8-4
3 Worrall, Heeps, Sedgmen, Bewley 56.9 11-7
4 Schlein, Summers, Mountain, Smith 58.2 15-9
5 Heeps, Lawson, Sedgmen, Lunna 56.9 19-11
6 King, Summers, Greaves, Bacon 56.1 23-13
7 Worrall*, Schlein, Bewley, Mountain 56.6 25-20
8 Lunna, Greaves, Mountain, Bacon 57.8 28-23
9 Heeps, Summers, Sedgmen, Smith 57.0 32-25
10 King, Worrall, Bewley, Greaves 56.2 35-28
11 Schlein, Lawson, Lunna, Greaves 57.0 38-31
12 Worrall, Heeps, Mountain, Bacon 57.2 41-34
13 Schlein, King, Summers, Lawson 56.5 46-35
14 Bewley, Sedgmen, Greaves, Smith 57.2 49-38
15 King, Worrall, Summer, Heeps (e/f) 57.6 52-41
*tac ride points count double
Ipswich 3 pts. Glasgow 0 pts.
Ipswich 26 53
Glasgow 22 52
Edinburgh 23 51
Sheffield 22 50
Redcar 25 45
Peterborough 22 36
Workington 16 28
Newcastle 22 28
Scunthorpe 24 20
Berwick 28 11