Witches miss the chance to grab a play-off final place and now have to go to Somerset and pick up at least a point
Scunthorpe 49 Ipswich 41
Ipswich Witches hopes of reaching the play-off final against Edinburgh will go down to the wire after they missed their chance to sew a final place up at Scunthorpe.
The Suffolk side didn’t even pick up a point against a determined home team and the Witches now travel to Somerset next Friday needing a point to be sure of making the final.
Ipswich knew a draw at the fast Lincolnshire track would secure their passage, but it wasn’t to be.
Rohan Tungate had got the Witches off to a good start, when he shot from the front in heat one to lead all the way.
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But it took a last-gasp pass by captain Ritchie Hawkins to split the Scorpions reserves in heat two.
Richie Worrall continued his fine form from Thursday night as he stormed to victory in heat four but the Witches fell behind in the next as Tungate could do nothing to catch Tomas Jorgensen and guest Ricky Wells.
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David Howe passed Worrall in the next but the battling Witches were back on terms in heat seven after Morten Risager, returning to the side after missing Thursday’s clash with Somerset, and Gino Manzares, enjoying a much better night than of late, gained a 5-1 maximum of their own to draw the Witches level.
It was anyone’s meeting now but no sooner were the Witches level, than they went behind again in heat eight.
Worrall impressed with another fine gate in heat nine and Manzares and Howe passed and re-passed in a thrilling heat ten, with the home man coming out on top.
The Witches were hanging onto the coat-tails of the home side but it was former Witch Carl Wilkinson who struck a dagger in the heart of Witches fans, winning heats 11 and 12, the second of which took his side six points ahead.
The Witches needed some luck and they didn’t get it when Tungate ground to a halt while leading heat 13. It left Worrall and Tungate needing a heat advantage in the final race, but despite passing galore, it was Howe who secured victory for the happy home side.
Scunthorpe: D Howe 12, R/R, T Jorgensen 11+2, R Wells 9+2, J Auty 6, M Williamson 3, C Wilkinson 8
Ipswich: R Tungate 6+2, C Heeps 2, M Risager 7+1, G Manzares 7+2, R Worrall 12, R Hawkins 6+2, A Ellis 1