Following on their superb away win at Birmingham on Wednesday night, the Plymouth Devils were in dynamic form for the 2nd leg at the St Boniface Arena on Thursday night , taking the overall victory by 12 points.
Their win away was the first home defeat by the reigning league champions since August 2015 and the Devils made sure of victory in a night of superb speedway with a drawn heat 14 with Man of the match Henry Atkins and Callum Walker tucking in sensibly behind race winner Tom Bacon . The fans and riders all erupted as the duo crossed the line leaving the Devils now two meetings away from a second Final having already reached the National Trophy Final. As yet their semi-final opponents are not known but on this form the Devils will fear no one.
16 year old whiz kid Atkins then had the fans jumping up and down , as well as his team mates and their mechanics watching heat 15 on the centre green, as he made a superb start and combined with Adam Roynon for a deserved and superb maximum 5-1 heat win .
Credit to Birmingham who pushed the Devils hard and were only two points down at heat 8 but their hopes of pulling the tie back were dashed as Liam Carr was excluded for touching he tapes. Skipper Compton and Atkins then posted a 5-1 heat win to put the Devils six up on the night and ten on aggregate. The Brummies though kept battling away and two successive 4-2 heat wins in heats 10 and 11 brought the scoreline to 34-32 and the deficit down to six points.
Benji Compton was pipped on the line in heat 12 by Taylor Hampshire and the drawn heat kept the Brummies still in with a chance of the semi -final. Roynon and Boxall , clearly suffering with his back , posted a 4-2 to make it 41-37 and the Devils ahead by eight. But Atkins and Walker wrapped things up in heat 14 and the celebrations began.
Team boss Laurence Rogers was full of praise for his team, “ Over the two legs all the lads were magnificent and fully deserved their semi-final slot. We were written off by the pundits pre-season but here we are now in the Trophy Final and now the K O Cup Semi-Final. It was a team effort and in that I include our mechanics and back room staff. This club is going places and we hope the recent results will bring the fans back to the SBA in large numbers for the rest of the season.”NATIONAL LEAGUE KO CUP QUARTER-FINAL, 2nd leg