COVENTRY 52 HITMEN 41

Friday September 11, 2015
The score doesn’t reflect the performance and effort shown by the visitors in this end of season mid-table battle at Coventry’s Brandon Circuit.

The early heats were where the meeting was ultimately decided with the home side racing to a 17-7 lead after just 4 heats. Despite the dry weather experienced in the preceding days the track was very wet and Coventry took full advantage. A fall in heat 3 for Tom Woolley
also aggravated an existing shoulder injury which cost points in the later heats.

The fightback began for the Hitmen in heat 5 when manager Jason Pipe nominated Liam Carr for double points and switched his reserves bringing in Steve Jones, the pairing combined for a 7 – 2 victory. A further 5-1 from man of the match Tony Atkin and Tom Woolley reduced the deficit and by the end of heat 8 Buxton were just 3 points down. Unfortunately that was a close as they came to pulling off a shock result.

Pipe was philosophical post-match ‘I’ve told the boys how important it is to keep it tight early in the meeting but we were caught cold. That said it was a fighting performance and scoring 40 plus points away from home is no mean feat. We matched Coventry point for point from heat 5! Tony (Atkin) was magnificent and the meetings can’t come fast enough as far as he’s concerned. To get anything when you are away from home especially with rider replacement your top 3 need to score double figures and we fell a little short tonight. Getting 6 from David’s (Speight) rides was a good result for the team and unfortunately Tom picked-up that injury. I felt we deserved something from tonight but it wasn’t to be.’

On Sunday the Hitmen have the opportunity to complete a unique treble by defeating their Visitors Eastbourne Eagles. Pipe takes up the story

‘If we defeat Eastbourne this Sunday we will have beaten the top 3 at home this season! Not bad for a team written off by the pundits pre-season. I can honestly say the team are all up for it and so looking forward to it.’

Tapes up at Hi-Edge this Sunday 3.00pm

COVENTRY 52: Daniel Halsey 12, Darryl Ritchings 11, Conor Dwyer 8, Rob Shuttleworth 7+2, Martin Knuckey 7+1, Mark Baseby 5+1, Jamie Halder 2

BUXTON 41: Tony Atkin 12, Liam Carr 10, Ryan Blacklock 7+2, Steve Jones 5, Tom Woolley 4+1, Lee Geary 3+1, David Speight r/r

National League points: Coventry 3 Buxton 0