Thursday April 25, 2019
SWINDON staged a late rally for a potentially vital group point from a 48-42 defeat at Ipswich on Thursday.

The CFS Filtration Robins were undone as the home side utilised flying reserve Jake Allen to the maximum – but their overall position in their Premiership Supporters’ Cup section was still enhanced thanks to the last two races at Foxhall.

Trailing by ten points with two races to go, skipper Jason Doyle combined with Adam Ellis for a big 5-1 in the fan-nominated Heat 14 to reduce the gap to six.

And then Polish star Tobiasz Musielak flew away in the finale for his third win of the night for the points the Robins required, even though Troy Batchelor was kept at the back by Chris Harris.

The bulk of the Robins’ scoring came from their heat-leaders, with Doyle’s maximum spoiled only by the inspired Allen in Heat 11.

The Swindon captain won his first two races by a distance, although a 5-1 to the home reserves in Heat 2 left the visitors playing catch-up.

There was a let-off in Heat 4 when Witches skipper Danny King fell after getting the better of Batchelor, preventing an Ipswich 5-1, and the gap gradually extended to eight points as Krystian Pieszczek mounted a robust defence of the lead against Batchelor in Heat 9.

Robins took their first advantage of the meeting in Heat 10 as Musielak ended Allen’s winning run with Ellis third ahead of Harris.

However, that was cancelled out by Allen defeating Doyle with King getting past Dawid Lampart on the second lap of Heat 11, and that realistically left the Robins chasing a consolation point.

Two shared heats followed as Harris took the Witches closer to victory whilst Allen and Richard Lawson tucked in behind Doyle in Heat 13 to confirm it – but the night did have a positive end for the away side, and the additional match point could prove crucial.

Manager Alun Rossiter said: “It’s a decent point for us, and I felt we deserved it.

“We pulled it out of the bag again and Adam popped up with a vital ride like he did in Heat 15 against Poole, and that 5-1 with Doyley set it up for the 3-3 in the last race. Once we got that 5-1 I was confident that we could get a point out of it.

“The track was in good condition, it wasn’t rough or anything, but because of the rain they’d had through the day it was very clayey in content so the dirt moved to the outside, and with the calibre of riders there they would just sit on the edge of that dirt and they were gone.

“We came up against Jake Allen who was on fire tonight, and their home results so far show they’re a decent side.

“I am a little concerned about our reserves, though, because Zach (Wajtknecht) and James (Shanes) are struggling at the moment. Ipswich have strong reserves and I’m not panicking yet, but I do expect to see a bit of a better showing from them.”

Robins are back in East Anglia on Monday when they visit King’s Lynn, before returning to the Abbey for a big Bank Holiday Monday home Premiership opener against Peterborough on May 6.

IPSWICH 48: Jake Allen 16, Richard Lawson 9+1, Chris Harris 7+2, Krystian Pieszczek 5+1, Cameron Heeps 4+2, David Bellego 4+1, Danny King 3
SWINDON 42: Jason Doyle 13+1, Tobiasz Musielak 10+1, Troy Batchelor 9, Adam Ellis 6, James Shanes 2+1, Dawid Lampart 2, Zach Wajtknecht 0

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