Boss Rob Lyon calls for unity as King’s Lynn Stars aim to rediscover their form
- Credit: Matthew Usher
Team boss Rob Lyon is desperate to end the gloom which is threatening to overshadow King's Lynn's play-off hopes.
The Stars – who earlier this term enjoyed a club-record 14 victories on the bounce – have led the Elite League table from virtually race one of the 2014 campaign. But, with their place in the end-of-season shoot-out secured, Lynn's form and luck has deserted them, heightening fears the club's glory charge is going to run out of steam.
The Stars have lost three meetings already this month and are just four points ahead of Poole with the same number of matches left. And with the table-topping outfit having first pick of their play-off opponents, Lyon is looking for his troops to get back on track at Eastbourne this evening.
Lynn's boss said: 'We've got to come together and encourage. We've got to encourage the riders, including the fans, as a whole club. This feeling of doom and gloom isn't going to help anyone. I know it's difficult at the moment, I know it's frustrating, but it's not like people aren't giving 100pc. Things just aren't going our way at the moment.
'We desperately want to win this league. It would be the first time Lynn have lifted the Elite League trophy. I know people are frustrated and disappointed. But if we stick together I still believe we can make this happen. It's still in our destiny.'
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A 52-38 hammering against a five-man Coventry team – on a track a saddened Lyon said he no longer looks forward to going to due to the state of the surface – on Thursday did little to stem worries that Lynn are faltering at the business end of what's been a memorable campaign. And Lyon knows that his side are going to have to turn a corner – and quickly – if they want to lift the title in October.
He said: 'No excuses, we deserved to lose against Coventry. I guess you can say there's been a bit of complacency now we've qualified. Our only motivation is whether we can finish top or not. We've had serious injuries to Niels (Kristian Iversen) and Lewis (Rose). And some riders' confidence has taken a hit.
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'The scores for riders like Rory (Schlein) don't always reflect the input and commitment. There are reasons we're struggling. I know that doesn't help and we're probably performing the fourth best out of four possible teams who could make the play-offs, but we're doing everything we can to put things right.'
Eastbourne, fifth, have a 100pc home record and are chasing a top-four slot themselves. Lynn's difficult task this evening won't be helped by the absence of Iversen and Robert and Simon Lambert (other meetings). Mark Lemon, Scott Nicholls and Ben Morley will guest for the night.
Eastbourne Eagles: 1 Bjarne Pedersen, 2 Timo Lahti, 3 Cameron Woodward, 4 Joonas Kylmakorpi, 5 Lewis Bridger (Guest), 6 Benji Compton (G), 7 Danny Halsey
King's Lynn Stars: 1 Kenneth Bjerre, 2 Mark Lemon (G), 3 Scott Nicholls (G), 4 Nicklas Porsing, 5 Rory Schlein, 6 Lewis Kerr, 7 Ben Morley (G)
Lynn have 61 points and can get 76 (1 home, 3 away matches left)
Poole have 57 can get 72 (1H, 3A)
Coventry have 51 can get 71 (4H, 2A)
Swindon have 47 can get 58 (1H, 2A)
Eastbourne have 44 can get 71 (1H, 6A)
Lakeside have 44 can get 51 (1H, 1A)
Wolves, Leicester and Belle Vue can't finish in top four.
*maximum of 3pts on offer for a home win, 4 for an away one
** stats prior to last night's meetings