Play-off hopes resting on bonus point
IPSWICH Witches team manager Mike Smillie has admitted the Suffolk side's play-off hopes will be all but over if they don't at least get the bonus point from today's Elite League clash at Swindon.
By Elvin King
IPSWICH Witches team man-ager Mike Smillie has admitted the Suffolk side's play-off hopes will be all but over if they don't at least get the bonus point from today's Elite League clash at Swindon.
The Witches travel to Wiltshire in a Sky-televised clash without broken collarbone victim Chris Louis.
Psychologically, as well as practically, Louis' miss will give the home side a big boost.
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However, Ipswich did plenty of good work in a big 56-37 win over the Robins back in June and manager Smillie is expecting at least the bonus point. Indeed, Smillie is hoping for even more.
“We have got 19 points to play with and if we don't get the bonus point, then quite honestly we have got to be wondering if we will make the play-offs,” Smillie said.
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“I don't see why we can't actually win at Swindon. They are having their problems and Peterborough ran them very close last week.
“Also, Lee Richardson pulled out of the Grand Prix on Saturday night and he is now missing.”
With Richardson absent, Davey Watt comes in as a Robins' guest.
Still ecstatic after their narrow one-point success over Peterborough, Robins' co-promoter Alun Rossiter commented: “The meeting against Ipswich has been billed as a play-off showdown and suffice to say, I am obviously looking for the right result on the night.”
Louis, meanwhile, knows he is likely to face at least a couple of weeks on the sidelines and will know more when he sees physio Brian Simpson this week.
“Apparently it is a little bit of a messy break and maybe it will be a better option to plate it, which would speed things up.
“Obviously the timing is bad, but we are still in the play-off hunt and mathematics don't come into it yet because there are plenty of points still for which to play.
Swindon: L Adams, D Watt, R Gafurov, rider replacement, S Ulamek, M Korneliussen, T Chrzanowski.
Ipswich: P Protasiewicz, K Jansson, R Miskowiak, rider replacement,
M Loram, D King, T Kroner.
Carl Wilkinson will deputise for Daniel King at Poole on Wednesday and at Foxhall on Thursday night when Ipswich entertain Coventry. King will be on his way to the world under-21 final in Italy.