Edinburgh 58 Sheffield Tigers 32: Play-off dreams end with heavy defeat in Scotland
Sheffield Tigers’ play-off dreams were crushed last night following a heavy 58-32 defeat at Edinburgh.
Tigers went into the fixture knowing a win was the minimum requirement - but they were outclassed and dominated in the end by their Scottish opponents.
No.1 Danny King and star reserve Broc Nicol contributed Tigers’ five race wins on the night - while their five team-mates managed just nine points between them.
A mistake from Josh MacDonald on the opening bends saw him lose third place as the hosts opened with an advantage with unstoppable leader Sam Masters getting the better of King also.
Nicol came through to take the win in the second before Edinburgh recorded their first 5-1 of the night in Heat 3.
Tigers responded instantly though with a maximum of their own with Nicol making it back-to-back race wins while guest Matthew Wethers also made a good getaway to join the American out front.
Powerful duo Ricky Wells and Masters helped ease the pressure for the hosts though as they led successive advantages to open up an eight point lead.
King came into the seventh as a tactical substitute and made a blistering start - but partner Justin Sedgmen didn’t move at all as his nightmare return to his former club continued.
Nicol then made it a hat-trick of straight wins but with no support again, Tigers were unable to close the gap.
They were made to pay as well as Edinburgh kicked into ruthless mode to coast to victory in as good a second half performance you’ll see anywhere.
The Monarchs managed five maximums in the final seven races with only a consolation 5-1 in Heat 11 from King and Nicol the only thing for the travelling supporters to get excited about.
It was a disappointing way for Tigers’ outside top four chances to come to an end in a fixture that summed up how their performances on the road have proved costly.
They round off their campaign at Glasgow tonight (7.30) with the Championship Pairs the final silverware up for grabs at Somerset on Friday.
King then lines-up at the biggest event on the British Speedway calendar next Saturday as track reserve at the British Grand Prix in Cardiff’s Principality Stadium.
EDINBURGH 58: Sam Masters 14+1, Ricky Wells 14+1, Josh Pickering 8+2, Cameron Heeps 7, James Sarjeant 6+3, William Lawson 6+3, Connor Coles 3.
SHEFFIELD 32: Broc Nicol 12+1, Danny King 11, Matthew Wethers 5, Todd Kurtz 3, Justin Sedgmen 1, Josh MacDonald 0, Zaine Kennedy 0.