Rare Wednesday night home date for Witches as Tigers look to show their teeth and take points off Ipswich
PUBLISHED: 11:14 15 May 2017 | UPDATED: 12:05 15 May 2017
© Copyright Stephen Waller
The ‘Tru7.com’ Ipswich Witches welcome Sheffield Tigers to Foxhall on a rare Wednesday night home fixture in the Championship this week, (7.30pm).
The Witches have had two home fixtures to start the month of May, with two wins from two so far. A win on Wednesday will consolidate their position in the top four ahead of the return trip to Sheffield on Thursday.
The home side have a full complement of riders as they look to put their injury woes behind them and look ahead to the rest of the season.
The Tigers were one of the pre-season favourites alongside the Witches and have made a solid start to the campaign winning all four home meetings and the Yorkshire side picked up their first away win of the season on Sunday at Scunthorpe to put them in the top four.
Kyle Howarth has started the season in impressive form, winning the British semi-final at his home track earlier in the month and he is joined by a successful Witches guest from earlier this season, Josh Bates. Jack Parkinson-Blackburn is out with injury as Robert Shuttleworth guests at seven with rider replacement in operation at four for Lasse Bjerre who is riding in Denmark.
The sides met on the opening night at Foxhall in March with the Suffolk outfit running out 52-41 winners with Danny King recording a maximum from five rides on the night.
Team Manager Ritchie Hawkins says his team are looking to continue their good Foxhall form and send the Tigers home with nothing.
“We keep saying every week that it is going to be a tough meeting,” said Hawkins.
“We are going to have to be on our game but we are in brilliant form and we need to look at getting another three points.
“You have got to look to get a seven point victory and stop them getting a point but we’ve just got to win first and then see where we are at.”
Hawkins believes his team have started the season well and will only get stronger from this point on.
“It’s still early to tell where everyone is going to be at. Edinburgh and Glasgow have had good starts but so have we I think when you consider what has gone on. Anything can happen this year in this league.
“It’s a bonus to have seven riders again and we look a strong outfit and Nathan (Greaves) came in and did a really good job last Thursday. Hopefully we can now gel as a team and it is looking good. We have done well to be where we are at with everything that has happened. We’re in a good position and we should only get stronger.”
Ipswich ‘Tru7.com’ Witches:
1. Danny King (c) 8.44
2. Cameron Heeps 5.07
3. Justin Sedgmen 7.60
4. Kyle Newman 6.31
5. Rory Schlein 7.67
6. Connor Mountain 2.56
7. Nathan Greaves 2.27
Team Manager: Ritchie Hawkins
Sheffield ‘Window Centre’ Tigers
1. Josh Grajczonek 8.90
2. Todd Kurtz 5.76
3. Josh Bates 4.89
4. R/R for Lasse Bjerre 6.64
5. Kyle Howarth (c) 7.18
6. Robert Branford 4.60
7. Robert Shuttleworth (g) 2.00
Team Manager: Simon Stead
Team Pl Pts
Edinburgh 10 23
Glasgow 9 22
IPSWICH 10 20
Sheffield 7 16
Redcar 9 14
Peterborough 7 12
Workington 6 11
Newcastle 6 10
Scunthorpe 12 10
Berwick 10 1
Last five home results v Tigers:
Sheffield’s last five:
CH Scunthorpe 40-50 Sheffield
CH Sheffield 54-38 Redcar
KOC Edinburgh 47-43 Sheffield
CH Sheffield 50-40 Peterborough
CH Sheffield 57-33 Ipswich