Image Credit: Ron MacNeill

Crucial Derby Ahead

NEWS Wednesday 13th September 2017, 8:51pm

by Graham Muncie

It’s derby day at Armadale this Friday as the Glasgow Tigers head along the M8 in what could be a crucial SGB Championship tussle.

While both teams look well placed to make the end of season playoffs this is not confirmed for either yet so this match could take on maximum importance with the cut off date for fixtures to count looming.

After a relatively clear run with injuries throughout the season the Tigers have been hit with the injury bug at the worst possible time. Nike Lunna and Tom Perry’s seasons appear to be over with back and arm injuries respectively and former Monarchs Dan Bewley is out with a groin complaint. A mixture of guests and rider replacement take their place with Newcastle's Ashley Morris in for Lunna, Workington's James Sarjeant comes in for Perry and rider replacement operates for Bewley.

Despite these injury woes the Monarchs certainly cannot take the Tigers lightly. Their strength is built on the top 3 of Worrall, Lawson and Summers all of whom are in fine form and it could be argued that on previous showings that Lunna and Perry will not be big misses at Armadale. The Tigers battled to a well earned draw at Armadale earlier in the season and will be looking for a repeat of this on Friday.

The Monarchs looked to be back to a full 1-7 last Friday but this was not to last the night with captain Sam Masters being forced to pull out of the second meeting of the double header after coming down heavily on his previously injured shoulder. Masters was forced to miss the rest of the Monarchs weekend fixtures but has declared himself ft and raring to go for this weekend.

This is a boost for the Monarchs on what is a big weekend ahead Monarchs co-promoter Alex Harkess saying “We are nearly there in regards to clinching that playoff spot and Glasgow at home and Workington away are targets for victories for us. Obviously neither of these will be easy and we will need to be at our best but we are now in pole position for a playoff spot and I am looking for us to finalise that this weekend.”

This week will also see the annual Speedway Riders Benevolent Fund collection with the riders coming among the fans to collect.

Teams for the SGB Championship match at Armadale on Friday 15th September (start time 7:30pm, gates open 6:30pm), are:

PARSONS PEEBLES MONARCHS: Sam Masters(capt), Josh Pickering, Ricky Wells, Mark Riss, Erik Riss, Max Clegg, Mitchell Davey.

GLASGOW ALLIED VEHICLES TIGERS: Richie Worrall, Ashley Morris(guest), Richard Lawson, Dan Bewley(Rider Replacement), Aaron Summers(capt), James Sarjeant(guest), Jack Smith

TIGERS LOOKING TO ROAR: Glasgow looked favourites to sweep all earlier in the season but have fallen on tougher times recently with a shock home defeat to Sheffield being matched by some abject away performances. They will be looking to address this slide on Friday though and with the heat leader power of Worrall, Summers and Lawson the Monarchs will still need to be on their toes though. Backup will come from Ashley Morris and it will be interesting to see how James Sarjeant performs the youngster has had a disapointing season but has impressed on his last two visits to Armadale and a big score from him could go a long way to seeing the Tigers mount a fierce challenge.

LAST MEETING: The Parsons Peebles Monarchs took a maximum 6 points running out victors over both the Workington Comets and Ipswich Witches by score lines of 52-40 and 48-44. Monarch’s top men were Erik Riss and Ricky Wells who scored a combined 25 and 24 over the two matches. Craig Cook was top man for the Comets with 14 with Rory Schlein main man for the Witches with 13.

NEXT MEETING: Everything going well this weekend next Friday will see the home leg of our playoff semi final opponents to be confirmed early next week.