Leicester 44 King’s Lynn 46 – Stars boost their play-off push thanks to away victory

Niels-Kristian Iversen, red helmet, did the business when it mattered for Lynn at Leicester. Picture

Niels-Kristian Iversen, red helmet, did the business when it mattered for Lynn at Leicester. Picture: MATTHEW USHER

King's Lynn triumphed against a resilient Leicester team to win a closely-contested match and firm up their play-off credentials.

There was little to choose between the two sides in the early stages on Saturday with the points shared in the opening four races.

The deadlock was broken in the fifth heat when Adam Ellis, a guest replacement for the injured Lewis Kerr, took a wide line around the first corners which propelled him into the lead. The Stars' Nicklas Porsing held second position until the start of the third lap when Carl Wilkinson switched to the inside to pass the Dane.

The result earned the Stars a slender two-point advantage which quickly disappeared as Leicester won back-to-back races only for Kenneth Bjerre to come into form to win heat nine ahead of Ellis who came under threat of losing his place twice by Wilkinson but thwarted every move. With the scoreline now level again the match was still evenly balanced until the reserves' race when Ellis and Ashley Morris jumped out of the start in unison to leave the Lions' pairing trailing.

The home team were unfortunate to drop a point in heat 13 – that was won by Jason Doyle ahead of Niels-Kristian Iversen who lost vital time when his front wheel lifted momentarily. Once he had regained full control of his bike the Stars captain quickly made up lost ground on Piotr Swiderski to pass him along the back straight. Doyle was too far ahead by then and that was the order until the final bend when Swiderski straightened up and fell which gifted Anton Rosen a point.

Leicester refused to give in and gained maximum points in the penultimate heat which brought the scores level again for the fourth time in the match. Entering the final race the Lions' team had the choice of starting positions and decided go off the inside grids. With Richard Lawson taking gate two it left Iversen on the unfavourable outside which had produced only one heat win all night.

As the tapes lifted Iversen reached the first corner at the same time as the other three – which made a nonsense of the statistic – and with his wheels finding extra grip in the track his speed took him into an unassailable lead. Behind him was Doyle, but he was a lone figure as his team partner Grzegorz Walasek fell on the first bend leaving Lawson the formality of securing the vital third place, and with it three out of four match points, to keep the Stars on course for a play-off place.

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Leicester (number of rides): Jason Doyle 13 (5), Aaron Summers (Guest) 3+1 (4), Grzegorz Walasek 11 (5), Szymon Wozniak 9+1 (4), Piotr Swiderski 3+2 (4), Carl Wilkinson (G) 3 (5), Dan Greenwood (G) 2+1 (3)

King's Lynn: Niels-Kristian Iversen 12 (5), Nicklas Porsing 4+1 (4), Richard Lawson (G) 8 (5), Kenneth Bjerre 5 (4), Anton Rosen (G) 1+1 (3), Adam Ellis (G) 13+3 (6) and Ashley Morris 3+2 (3)