Thursday June 28, 2018
SHEFFIELD are sweating on the fitness of heat-leader Charles Wright after an eventful Knockout Cup first leg tie at Owlerton.

Tigers eventually ran out 51-39 winners to gain a 12-point advantage ahead of Friday’s quarter-final decider in a night of high drama in the Steel City.

Wright looked set for a second straight win in Heat 11, but clattered into the home straight fence after picking up some grip out of bend four.

While he left the track in an ambulance, he stunned supporters as he then ran from the pits area to take his place in Heat 13 after declaring himself fit to ride.

And he didn’t just settle either as he worked his way into second place in a great show of grit and determination from the Tigers’ No.5.

But that wasn’t the only alarming incident of the night as former Sheffield man Jason Garrity was also taken to hospital with suspected leg injuries.

Already with three points to his name, Garrity clipped the back end of Todd Kurtz’s machine down the back straight bringing him to an abrupt halt and sending him crashing into the ground.

That proved to be a bitter blow for the visitors who were already missing No.1 Steve Worrall.

But among the drama there was plenty of enthralling, fast-paced racing as well with riders from both sides putting on a real show for the spectators.

And Tigers co-promoter Damien Bates was keen to thank supporters for their patience as Sheffield maintained their unbeaten home record.

“There were a few incidents which we had to wait around for but these things happen every now and again unfortunately and we can only thank everyone for their patience and understanding,” Bates said.

“It was a very eventful meeting but also very entertaining as well and credit to both teams.

“Without sounding too greedy, I would’ve ideally liked a little bit more than a 12-point lead because Scunthorpe can be really strong at their place.

“But having said that, it could be a lot worse and we just need all of our riders to go to Scunthorpe and make sure they get the job done.

“We’ll see how Charles is feeling on Friday morning and make a decision between us but he is feeling a bit sore.

“He hit the fence quite hard but he didn’t want his night to finish on a low point and really wanted to take part in Heat 13 and that’s Charles all over.”

It was another solid team effort from Sheffield with plenty of encouraging signs to take into Friday’s second leg.

SHEFFIELD 51: Lasse Bjerre 11+1, James Shanes 9+1, Ty Proctor 8+2, Todd Kurtz 8+2, Charles Wright 7, Broc Nicol 6+2, Georgie Wood 2

SCUNTHORPE 39: Dimitri Berge 16, Josh Auty 11, Jake Allen 4+2, Danny Phillips 4, Jason Garrity 3, Gino Manzares 1+1, Steve Worrall R/R.

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