NATIONAL LEAGUE KNOCKOUT CUP
QUARTER-FINAL SECOND LEG
King’s Lynn Young Stars 39 Mildenhall Fen Tigers 51
(Mildenhall win 106-79 on aggregate)
THE Fen Tigers booked their place in the knockout cup semi-final after a fiesty encounter at the Norfolk Arena against King’s Lynn Young Stars on Wednesday night.
But they could have paid a heavy price with fears that skipper Lewis Blackbird could face a lengthy spell on the sidelines with shoulder damage.
He was injured after a four-man pile-up in his third ride, that also saw the Young Stars impressive Adam Lowe ruled out for the rest of the night.
Already trailing by 15 points after the first leg at West Row, the Young Stars never looked like overturning the deficit with Mildenhall restricting them to a four-point lead in the early stages.
There were ugly scenes after the first running of heat six when Young Stars’ captain James Cockle punched his counterpart Blackbird, something that angered Tigers’ co-promoter Chris Louis.
“It’s unacceptable to just punch another rider without any warning, and it’s even worse to do it in the full view of the public.
“It was a hard first turn, but nothing more. Maybe he’s watched too many Grand Prix on television and thinks it’s an okay thing to do. But all riders have to learn, especially at this level, you can’t behave like that.”
Cockle won the rerun, but the 20-16 lead that gave his side was as good as it got.
Mildenhall’s in-form Dan Halsey and Stefan Nielsen claimed a maximum in the next race to pull the sides level, and from that point onwards the Tigers were never behind, with three successive five-ones between Heat 11 and 13 clinching the match.
King’s Lynn Young Stars = 39 (79): James Cockle 11, Brendan Johnson 4, Lewis Kerr 0, Adam Lowe 6 (withdrawn), Jake Knight 3, Tom Stokes 7+2, Scott Campos 8+2.
Mildenhall Fen Tigers = 51 (106): Cameron Heeps 12+1, Joe Jacobs 7+2, Stefan Nielsen 6+2, Daniel Halsey 11+1, Lewis Blackbird (c) 5 (withdrawn), Nathan Stoneman 6+1, Josh Bates 4.