Berwick Bandits face their opening Knockout Cup clash tonight at Shielfield Park (7.00pm) with the Sheffield Tigers the opponents in the first leg after Thursday’s original clash was rained off.
The winners will progress to the quarter-final stage, where they will meet the currently all-conquering Edinburgh Monarchs - the only team to have defeated the Bandits at home this season.
In a rather surprising move, the new Sheffield promotion have released British starlet Adam Roynon and recruited Wolverhampton’s Aussie Ty Proctor as his replacement.
Tonight the Bandits will be without Frenchman David Bellego.
He has been recalled by his federation to contest a round of the World Under-21 Championship at Stralsund on the Baltic in the far north of Germany.
Bandits’ co-manager George Hepburn said: “David made his ambitions in both the World and European Under-21 Championship very clear to us.
“We were aware of these justifiable ambitions when we agreed his contract earlier this year. Tonight he will take his first step towards the World crown, racing at Stralsund.
“He goes with our club’s best wishes and full approval.
“As a result, we will be using the rider-replacement regulation, with Matty Wethers, Matej Kus and the two reserves eligible to take his four races.
Tomorrow at Brough Park (6.30pm) the Newcastle Diamonds look to gain revenge for their defeat in the Ian Thomas Shield when Workington Comets arrive on Tyneside for a Premier League clash.
Comets’ owner Laura Morgan feels the side are more than capable of getting a result at Brough Park:
She said: “We were over there at the start of the season for the Shield and we came away having just lost by two points on the night, which gives us a lot of hope for tomorrow.
“Ricky Wells and Ashley Morris will be back with us, but it promises to be another tough fixture as they invariably are when the Comets and the Diamonds clash.
“We will be looking to build on our opening league success of last weekend while the Diamonds will be looking to bounce back from their defeat at Peterborough.”