Cradley 48 Devils 41
The Plymouth Devils , looking for an away win against Cradley, will point to a double dose of misfortune in heat 9 as their downfall to defeat. A superb 5-1 heat win in the eighth race from Richard Andrews and Callum Walker, who burst through for second spot on the final bend, putting them two points ahead at 25-23 .
Then disaster struck. Going into the first turn reserve William O’Keefe, who had made a good gate, was left with nowhere to go and had to lay his bike down to avoid his partner Adam Roynon . With the race stopped with O’keefe excluded Roynon lost his chain coming back into the pits , possibly caused by the close clash with his team mate. Cradley protested that he was not under power and should be excluded as well but the Devils No. 5 knew he was still under power and frantic pit work followed to get him out on track for the re-run. Unfortunately as he led the chain came off and he was forced to retire from the race gifting the home side a 5-0 and putting them in the lead 28-25 .
Then in heat 11 race leader Steve Boxall, clearly still not 100% fit, lost the race win on the final bend when home skipper Tom Perry rounded him on the final bend with the Devils No. 1 struggling to turn on his bike. Then in heat 13 he and Roynon trapped on a 5-1 only for Boxall to fall back to third and then last as he pulled up in pain and the Devils’ chances of getting anything from the meeting were diminishing race by race.
Henry Atkins battled away for a vital second spot in heat 14 putting the Devils 7 points down on the night at 45-38 leaving Roynon and Compton needing a 4-2 to give them an away point . Roynon shot into the lead with Compton challenging Greenwood before he too suffered mechanical gremlins and did not finish the race.
Team boss Laurence Rogers felt his side deserved something out of the meeting, “ We were very unlucky not to get anything at all. The boys battled hard and had no luck at all. It just wasn’t our night . Steve is clearly not fully fit with his back and we lost points through that . The lads were disappointed at not pulling off a win when we had done the hard work to get into the lead. With no home meeting this week they have a week off now till we meet Belle Vue at the SBA next Thursday night (20th).”
TRAVEL PLUS NATIONAL LEAGUE
CRADLEY 48: Tom Perry 13, Dan Greenwood 10+2, Ben Morley 8+1, Conor Dwyer 6, Luke Harris 5+1, Shelby Rutherford 4, Joe Lawlor 2+2.
PLYMOUTH 41: Adam Roynon 11, Benji Compton 9, Steve Boxall 8, Richard Andrews 5, Callum Walker 4+2, Henry Atkins 4+2, William O’Keefe 0.