Pepe missing for Witches

IPSWICH Evening Star Witches will take nothing for granted when they entertain bottom club Oxford at Foxhall Stadium tonight.The Cheetahs, who have endured a torrid season, may have little to ride for but their form hasn't been that disastrous of late and Ipswich will want to pick up all five points in the B fixture clashes between the clubs to keep up their play-off hopes.

By Mike Bacon

IPSWICH Evening Star Witches will take nothing for granted when they entertain bottom club Oxford at Foxhall Stadium tonight.

The Cheetahs, who have endured a torrid season, may have little to ride for but their form hasn't been that disastrous of late and Ipswich will want to pick up all five points in the B fixture clashes between the clubs to keep up their play-off hopes.

If the Evening Star Witches want the first two points of those five, they will have to get them without Pepe Protasieiwcz. The Polish GP star is recovering from a leg injury he sustained in a crash at a Swedish League fixture last week. The crash happened in only his second ride of the night, and it meant Protasiewicz missed Poland's Race-Off clash at Reading last week.

“There is nothing broken, but my muscles and nerves are very sore,” Protasiewicz said from Poland last night. “I had had a lot of ice packs on my left leg and it is a lot easier than it was. I will go to Lonigo on Friday and practice for the Italian Grand Prix, but I won't ride in the GP on Saturday if it is too painful.

“I'm not going to ride for Ipswich and then have to pull out after a couple of races against Oxford. That is not fair on the fans and team. Hopefully I will be back on Monday night at Wolverhampton for Ipswich.”

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The Witches will use the rider replacement facility for Protasieiwcz, meaning any rider in the side can have an extra ride, while Carl Wilkinson rides at No. 6, with Danny King in action for Mildenhall at Redcar. Oxford are without the injured Davey Watt and Ales Dryml, who continues to make good progress after his serious head injury two weeks ago.

The Witches won a quick-fire double over the Cheetahs at the beginning of the season, and nothing less than a competent victory tonight will be satisfactory.

Tonight's teams

Ipswich: 1 Rider replacement, 2 K Jansson, 3 R Miskowiak, 4 C Louis, 5 M Loram, 6 C Wilkinson, 7 T Kroner

Oxford: 1 T Wiltshire, 2 TBA, 3 D Howe, 4 A Skornicki, 5 rider replacement, 6 L Tomicek, 7 E Andersson.

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