Witches are banking on guest Boyce

THE tough meetings continue to come thick and fast for the injury-hit Ipswich Witches with this afternoon Peterborough Panthers the visitors to Foxhall.

By Mike Bacon

THE tough meetings continue to come thick and fast for the injury-hit Ipswich Witches with this afternoon Peterborough Panthers the visitors to Foxhall.

Craig Boyce, the veteran Aussie who spent a couple of seasons with the Witches a few years ago, guests for Mark Loram and, although Boyce will give it his all, his nomination in itself shows the fragility with which even the Witches management view the current side.

Rider replacement would have been an option on a day when few top riders are available because of the busy Bank Holiday schedule.


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But Ipswich have gone for Boyce, a rider averaging just seven points a meeting, rather than trust their top four of Chris Louis, Robert Miskowiak, Kim Jansson and Zibi Suchecki to come up with the goods in taking Loram's rides.

Peterborough owner Colin Horton says that a win at Ipswich is a must for the Panthers.

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The reigning champions have dropped points on the road in recent weeks and the derby clash at Foxhall will be their fifth straight away match.

Horton said: “We have made some silly mistakes over the last few away matches. This cannot continue and I expect the riders to make amends at Ipswich.”

The Panthers have lost their last four away meetings, while the Witches managed to record their first Elite League victory of the season in their last home outing against Wolverhampton at Foxhall.

The return of the former Witches stalwarts Hans Andersen and Daniel King should add extra spice to the meeting, especially after King's ill-advised comments regarding the Witches management over the winter, in which he stated he “never wanted to ride for the Witches again”.

Andersen remains a big favourite with many Witches fans however.

His 'win at all costs' attitude might not go down well with other riders but most fans and promoters would have him in their side first pick.

However, this afternoon is about the Witches and a victory would certainly be a real fillip for Suffolk side.

Marcin Rempala will be enjoying his first reserve ride at Foxhall since he dropped down from the No.4 position and, if he can show the type of form he did in his final ride against Wolverhampton 11 days ago at the Heath, he could prove a trump card.

But, make no bones about it, the Panthers start favourites.

Today's teams

Ipswich: 1 C Boyce, 2 K Jansson, 3 C Louis, 4 Z Suchecki, 5 R Miskowiak, 6 M Rempala, 7 T Kroner.

Peterborough: 1 H Andersen, 2 L Dryml, 3 N Kristian Iversen, 4 P Swiderski, 5 K Bjerre, 6 D King, 7 R Hall.

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