Somerset 53 King’s Lynn 37: Stars have it all to do in second leg of final
- Credit: Archant
King's Lynn have it all to do to lift the Knockout Cup after a 53-37 defeat in Tuesday night's first leg at Somerset.
The Tru Plant Stars enjoyed a mid-meeting revival but found the hosts too hot to handle around the Oak Tree Arena and trail by 16 going into Wednesday night's decider at the Adrian Flux Arena (7.30).
Jason Doyle trapped with Jake Allen filing in behind from gate one to give Somerset the perfect start but the Stars responded through Simon Lambert roaring out of gate three and guest Tero Aarnio surviving a lap-two lift to hold off Nico Covatti.
Thomas Jorgensen pressed Charles Wright all the way in a shared third but Simon Lambert got pushed out by Chris Harris, with Covatti steaming through for a second home maximum.
Wright made light work of heat five with Lawson pressing Riss for second while Robert Lambert's bad start resulted in a rare duck for the number one.
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Doyle led from the off in the sixth only for Niels-Kristian Iversen to have the last laugh, soaring around the outside on the final turn of lap three. That feat was repeated in the seventh but it spelt trouble for King's Lynn as Allen's blast around the boards led a 5-1 with Covatti, a replacement after Chris Harris had missed the two minutes.
Wright tried the outside run around Riss but suffered a nasty spill, although that man Covatti prevented the visitors making any inroads by blasting up the inside to win, having been held at the back by Simon Lambert in the first two turns.
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Iversen was flanked by Rebels and ran to the wire by Allen but stood firm for another 3-3 in the ninth.
But then Jorgensen appeared to get away with a jump to win a nip-and-tuck tussle ahead of Doyle with Ty Proctor third, reducing the arrears to eight points.
That gap was sliced in half courtesy of Robert Lambert and Riss giving no hope to their rivals in the 11th only for Wright to return with a forceful ride, guiding wide Aarnio as Somerset hit back with a 5-1.
Heat 13 lived up to its billing with Harris eventually picking off Iversen and Doyle overhauling Robert Lambert at the back on the final lap.
Jorgensen seized the lead in the penultimate race bit got reeled in by Lawson with Doyle and Wright cruising to a potentially-decisive maximum as Robert Lambert stalled in heat 15.
Somerset 53: N Covatti 12+3, C Wright 11+1, J Doyle 11, J Allen 8+1, C Harris 6+1, R Lawson 5+1, A Summers r/r.
Stars 37: N Iversen 10, T Jorgensen 7, E Riss 6+1, S Lambert 4+1, R Lambert 4, T Proctor 4+1, T Aarnio 2+1.