Sheffield Tigers: Injured Bates fears World Under-21 misery

Josh Bates
Josh Bates
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Josh Bates remains a major doubt for Sheffield’s clash with Workington at Owlerton tonight – and could be facing World Under-21 Team Cup heartache.

Bates crashed heavily in the home win over Berwick last Thursday and sustained a shoulder injury which ruled him out of the trip to Workington on Saturday.

Now he could miss out tonight, despite having daily physio to ease the problem, and if he fails to make it he could also miss Great Britain’s World U-21 meeting in Denmark at the weekend.

Tigers would have no option but to use the rider replacement facility in his absence.

He’s got some big meetings ahead of him, including the British Final at Belle Vue on June 13 and the first leg of the World U-21 individual final on June 18.

Tigers co-promoter Damien Bates said: “Josh has been working hard to try and get himself fit but he’s nothing more than 50/50 at this stage it has to be said.

“He is desperate to make it for all his meetings but he has to be sensible and take the right advice.

“He’s got another 10 days before the British Final and even longer for the World U-21 but he hates missing any meetings.”

Workington are depleted for tonight’s clash because of Danish League fixtures which take priority – but Bates says Sheffield won’t ease up.

“The boys are still hurting from losing at Workington on Saturday and want to put it right tonight,” he said.

“Workington still have Ricky Wells, a former Sheffield rider, who always enjoys coming back here.

“And they have another ex-Tiger in Adam Roynon in the reserve spot.

“Matt Williamson has been scoring well at reserve of late too, so we’re not taking anything for granted and we’ll be going hard at it.”

Sheffield: Simon Stead, Josh Bates, Kyle Howarth, Dimitri Berge, Jason Garrity, Arthur Sissis, Nathan Greaves.

Workington: Ricky Wells, Rob Shuttleworth, Claus Vissing R/R, Mason Campton, Michael Palm Toft, Adam Roynon, Matt Williamson.