Sheffield Tigers seek four new faces as Neil Machin looks to rebuild

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SHEFFIELD Tigers fans can expect up to four new faces next season according to club owner Neil Machin.

The Tigers had a terrible 2012 campaign with a team designed to be strong from one to seven, but it now looks as if that may change for next year.

Without an out-and-out number one, the city side struggled in the big heats, and that is something that Machin is keen to address for 2013. He said: “We all know about the struggles with the team and how it didn’t come together. Now we’re looking at a fresh start and one of the things that we’ve made no secret of is our wish to build with a strong number one at the top of the side.

“The next few weeks for us are about really getting down to who we keep at the club and who we don’t; it’s the most important two weeks of the winter for us.”

Machin, who has been at the helm at Owlerton for 20 years, added: “We are at advanced stages of negotiations with a few riders already and we have been planning for months. Last year, perhaps we waited too long and by then a lot of riders had already been snapped up, we won’t make that mistake again. We are looking at four new riders coming in for next year, which means two more of last year’s side will join Joe Haines in the team.

“We have plenty to take into account with Pepe Franc and Richard Hall both in the World Longtrack Series next year, obviously we won’t run a team with both of them in it because of the problems we’d have with availability.”