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Must win battle for Kent Royals
Must win battle for Kent Royals

One more time, as the old song goes, one more time the Iwade Garage Kent Royals head into battle, one more time they need a big result and one more time, we need our fans to get behind the side, as tonight the Kent Iwade Garage Royals head to Cowley to take on the Oxford Chargers in their final National League fixture of the season.

The Royals need to win (by any margin) to sneak into the all important fourth place in the National League table, and then wait for either the Armadale v Belle Vue fixture to take place and rely on Armadale beating Belle Vue or, the cut-off date of the 30th September.

The Royals head into tomorrow’s fixture without number 1 Max Clegg, Max will be racing for his SGB Championship side Leicester in the Championship Knock Out Cup fixture at Poole. Max will be replaced in the side by Berwick’s Lee Complin. Lee returned to the sport in 2022 after an 11-year absence.

A key factor of Kent’s season has been Ben Morley gelling with his fellow heat leaders late in the meeting and The Royals will be hoping Ben’s maximum antics from Sunday can be repeated tonight at Oxford, Ben has previously scored a maximum at the Sandy Lane circuit against tonight’s hosts in a guest appearance for Leicester earlier in the season.

Star of Sunday’s win with 9 points and two crucial heat wins was Connor King, Connor has come into the Royals line up and steadied the ship after the injuries suffered by Joe Alcock with some crucial scores at vital times and the same could be said of teammate Sam Woolley.

Sam has offered plenty in the reserve berth picking up vital minor places over opposite numbers, and these are the crucial points that can win you fixtures.

Returning to the line-up after being unavailable for Sunday is Kent captain Danno Verge. Danno, will line up in his usual number three role on what is potentially a last hurrah for the Kent born rider.

Should The Royals fail to make the Play Offs, this will be skipper Danno Verge’s last league fixture in competitive Speedway. Danno has taken the decision to retire at the end of the season, as he seeks to support his young family.

Oxford go into the fixture missing former Kent favourite Nathan Stoneman, Sam Hagon and Jacob Clouting. Former Kent favourite Stoneman has been out of action since August, after picking up a bad shoulder injury in a crash for his Championship side Berwick, the Chargers will be operating rider replacement in place of Nathan.

Former National League Riders Champion Adam Roynon joined fellow National League side Plymouth and has been a go to guest for a number of sides in recent weeks.

Jacob Clouting, another former King and Royal sits this fixture out after becoming a father at the weekend, and everyone connected with Kent sends their best wishes to Jacob and partner Sophie on the birth of their son Blake.

Jacob will be replaced at reserve by Kai Ward, Kai was a member of the Leicester Lion Cubs side in 2021 but failed to land a team spot this season, so will be looking for a big performance to put himself in the shop window for next season.

Leading the charge for The Chargers is another former Kent rider, Jordan Jenkins. Jordan has enjoyed a solid season at National League level, which has seen him make progress in both the Premiership and Championship.

Supporting Jordan will be fellow heat leader Henry Atkins, Atkins joined Oxford after leaving Plymouth and Oxford lost the services of another former Kent rider Ben Hopwood.

The action gets under way at Oxford Stadium at 7:30pm the post code for Sat Nav OX4 6LJ, the Stadium is situated on Sandy Lane in the Cowley suburb of Oxford.