Leicester Lions 52-38 Kent Kings
Leicester Lions 52-38 Kent Kings

The curtain was brought down on Kent TouchTec Kings’ debut campaign in the SGB Championship with a plucky showing at reigning champions (and Play Off qualifiers) Leicester Lions, going down 52-38 on Saturday. 

Trailing by just six points with two heats remaining, two successive 1-5 reverses at the end gave the final score a lop-sided impression that the admirable efforts of the Kings’ septet didn’t warrant.

Actually the match was framed in a near symmetrical fashion by two pairs of 5-1s by the hosts: the two above mentioned and maximums in heats two & three which put the Kings immediately on the back foot.  In fact though, the opening half of the meeting (heats one through to seven) saw TouchTec Kings riders first to the chequered flag in the majority of them: former Lions rider Scott Nicholls winning his first two rides, Troy Batchelor winning the opening heat and third heat leader. Paul Starke coming to the party in heat seven.  That win by Starke was actually part of a 5-1 for the visitors, backed up by Aussie Cameron Heeps and suddenly the deficit was just six points.

And with two further heat wins from number one Batchelor in heat 11 and Stark (backed up for a 4-2 by Alex Spooner, scoring his first point at this level) in the following race, it was down to the big two of Batchelor and skipper Nicholls in heat 13 to keep the TouchTec Kings in the match.  And they did so in style with a maximum – only to see the late challenge for a bonus point fall away in the final two races.

The end of season run of form though, resulted in the Central Park based senior-side finish a highly creditable eight in the SGB Championship table.

Leicester Lions                                                            52

Nick Morris        1′, 2, 3, 0, 3                                     = 9+1

Dan Thompson  2, 1′, 3, 2′                                        = 8+2

Ryan Douglas      3, 3, 0, FX                                        = 6

Kyle Howarth      2′, 1, 3, 2′, 2′                                  = 10+3

Hans Andersen  2, 0, 2, 1                                          = 5

Joe Thompson    2′, 1, 1′, 3                                        = 7+2

Zaine Kennedy   3, 1′, 1, 2                                         = 7+1

Kent TouchTec Kings                                                  38

Troy Batchelor    3, 2, 2, 3, 3, 0                                 = 13

Ben Morley         0, 0, 0, 0                                          = 0

Paul Starke          0, 3, 1, 3, 1                                     = 8

Cameron Heeps   1, 2′, 0, 1                                       = 4+1

Scott Nicholls     3, 3, 1′, 2′                                         = 9+2

Alex Spooner      0, 0, 1                                              = 1

Dan Gilkes          1, 0, 2, 0                                           = 3

Heat details

1 (rerun) Batchelor, D. Thompson, Morris, Morley 62.25  [3-3]

2 Kennedy, J. Thompson, Gilkes, Spooner 63.81 [8-4]

3 Douglas, Howarth, Heeps, Starke 62.56  [13-5]

4 Nicholls, Andersen, Kennedy, Gilkes 61.62  [16-8]

5 Douglas, Batchelor, Howarth, Morley 61.75 [20-10]

6 Nicholls, Morris, D. Thompson, Spooner 62.0 [23-13]

7 Starke, Heeps, J. Thompson, Andersen (fell rem.)  62.57 [24-18]

8 D. Thompson, Gilkes, Kennedy, Morley 62.32  [28-20]

9 Howarth, Batchelor, Nicholls, Douglas 61.69 [31-23]

10 Morris, D. Thompson, Starke, Heeps 62.32 [36-24]

11 Batchelor, Andersen, J. Thompson, Morley 61.99  [39-27]

12 (rerun) Starke, Kennedy, Spooner, Douglas (fell exc.) 62.63  [41-31]

13 (rerun) Batchelor, Nicholls, Andersen, Morris 61.44  [42-36]

14 J. Thompson, Howarth, Heeps, Gilkes 63.31  [47-37]

15 Morris, Howarth, Starke, Batchelor 62.50  [52-38)


 
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