PICTURE SPECIAL: Ipswich Witches tame Sheffield Tigers

IPSWICH ‘Sackers’ Witches stormed to a 54-40 victory in their first Premier League game of the season, over Sheffield ‘Window Centre’ Tigers.

Young Australian Rohan Tungate was the star turn for the hosts scoring paid 18, including three race wins, while Dakota North gave him some good support with paid 15.

The hosts got off to the worst possible start with the Tigers taking a 5-1 win in heat 1 – Dakota North’s bike failing him – but the Witches were soon back on level terms, thanks to race winner Cameron Heeps and Tungate, who came in second.

Two wins apiece for North and Tungate then fired Ipswich into a ten-point lead and that gave Sheffield the opportunity to use a tactical ride, which they utilised to great effect.

Ricky Wells was handed the black and white helmet and stormed to victory, taking six points in the process and was well supported by team-mate, Richard Hall, who ensured the visitors secured the maximum eight points on offer.

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At 24-21, the Witches had to pull away again and did so with wins for Tungate, North, Leigh Lanham and Mat Tresarrieu in the next four heats.

Tresarrieu’s victory represented a nightmare heat for the Tigers and a missed opportunity with Josef Franc, nominated as a tactical rider to accrue some much-needed points, muscled out into third place by his own team-mate, Hugh Skidmore.

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Franc, Ricky Wells and Hall gained victories in the next three races but North and Tungate combined in the final heat of the day, for four points and an impressive end to their first league game.

“We went down 5-1 in the first heat which is never a good sign but we rallied round and with Rohan riding well, we gave him a couple of extra rides and in the end we finished with a 14-point victory,” said team manager, Pete Simmons.

“I think that was Rohan’s best performance of the season.

“He was going well, we were a little under power with Mat struggling, so that was good to see.

“Mat made good starts in his first three races but came out of the second bend in a bit of a muddle, although he came right in one of those races.”

n The Witches’ Supporters’ Club raised �843 for injured rider, Morten Risager.

n The Witches travel to Redcar on Thursday and Edinburgh on Friday in the Premier League.

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