Mildenhall Fen Tigers open KO Cup campaign with 52-38 loss to King’s Lynn Young Stars

Mildenhall v King's Lynn.
12 April 2015.
Dan Halsey (red) challenges Shane Hazelden (yellow)

Mildenhall v King's Lynn. 12 April 2015. Dan Halsey (red) challenges Shane Hazelden (yellow) - Credit: Archant

KO Cup Mildenhall Fen Tigers 38 King’s Lynn Young Stars 52 It was an afternoon to forget for the Fen Tigers as they opened their 2015 KO Cup campaign with a comprehensive defeat. The Young Stars from Norfolk crossed the border and gave the Fen Tigers a lesson in gating throughout the afternoon.

The signs were not good in Heat One when James Cockle beat home captain Danny Halsey whilst partner Liam Rumsey was beaten by young Josh Bailey off 15 metres!

Spirits were briefly lifted by new reserve pairing Tom Bacon and Luke Ruddick who stormed to a 5-1 victory in Heat Two, and a fine ride in Heat Three from the always battling Connor Mountain who passed the visiting pair of Campos and Hazelden to share the heat.

The damage was done though in Heats Seven and Eight when firstly Connor Coles fell battling for the lead allowing the visitors to claim a 5-1 and take a two point lead. This was quickly extended to six points in Heat Eight when after a tape exclusion for Ruddick the Kings Lynn pairing raced to a second 5-1 in as many heats.

Two shared heats by the under performing Fen Tigers quelled the storm only for Cockle and Bailey to finish the meeting as a contest with another 5-1 in Heat 11.

Further heat wins in Heats 13 and 14 saw the visitors move 16 points ahead, although a fine ride from Halsey in Heat 15 with Mountain tucking in for third saw the deficit slightly reduced.

The meeting ending with the home side only having four race winners during the afternoon.

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Team Manager Robert Henry was naturally disappointed and shocked after the meeting.

He said: “I really felt we would be able to build up a significant lead to take to the Norfolk Arena on Wednesday, but we came up very short today.

“The lads still looked very rusty especially out of the gate and we were pretty much second best all afternoon. Our reserves did all we could ask of them and Connor Mountain was always mixing it.

“I felt maybe Connor Coles just tried a little too hard today and we threw away a number of points through silly mistakes.

“We now have a mountain to climb on Wednesday if we are to progress in the cup, but we will regroup and give it our best shot. It was not the start we wanted but we at least have something to build on”.


Mildenhall: 38 Danny Halsey 12 (5 rides), R/R, Connor Mountain 11+1 (6), Liam Rumsey 0 (3), Connor Coles 2+1 (4), Tom Bacon 6 (5) and Liam Ruddick 7+3 (7).

Kings Lynn: 52 James Cockle 12 (5 rides), Josh Bailey 7+1 (4), Scott Campos 7+1 (4), Shane Hazelden 10+1 (4), Tom Stokes 11 (5), Adam Portwood 0 (3) and Ryan Kinsley 5+2 (4).