Speedway: Albin boosts depleted Tigers

Joe Haines has called it a day.
Joe Haines has called it a day.
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Argentinian ace Facu Albin will race through the pain barrier to help injury-hit Sheffield in tonight’s Premier League clash with Glasgow at Owlerton (7.45).

Albin suffered rib damage in Sunday’s defeat at Newcastle but nothing is broken and he is keen to continue racing.

But Tigers have been hit by the retirement of Joe Haines after a run of poor form. The Bolton racer has lost confidence and is struggling to make it pay.

Damien Koppe has also been ruled out with suspected knee ligament damage. He will see a consultant surgeon tomorrow to decide the best way forward and Leicester’s Rob Branford will deputise.

Tigers co-promoter David Hoggart said: “It’s a true sign of Facu’s determination and the kind of character he is when he says he will do all he can to help us. He was in a lot of discomfort after the Newcastle match but he’s prepared to ride through the pain barrier.

“We are disappointed for Joe. It just hasn’t worked out for the lad but he has always given his best and we thank him for his efforts and retires with our best wishes.

“I suspected we may have a problem with Damien and he contacted us yesterday to say he wouldn’t be able to race. We will use Rob Branford at home tonight and also at Edinburgh tomorrow. We would also like to thank Richard Lawson for deputising for skipper Simon Stead once again. Also special thanks to Workington for their co-operation.

“It’s going to be tough; we are up against it but the boys will be going for it and they will show a true fighting attitude.”

Former Tigers rider Ricky Ashworth, meanwhile, has yet to regain consciousness and remains in intensive care in Hull Royal Infirmary following his bad crash last week.

Tigers: Tigers: Lawson, Haines R/R, Wells, Compton, Roynon, Branford, Albin.