A win for Josh in heat 3 Image Credit: Jack Cupido

Playoff Hopes Over

REPORT Saturday 7th September 2019, 8:58pm

by Graham Muncie

The Staggs Bar Monarchs playoff hopes are officially over after another toothless display on the road going down 60-30 to Berwick.

A huge performance was needed and in all honesty it was never on the cards as the Monarchs found themselves 10 down after 5 heats and the pattern continued in this vein the rest of the way.

Monarchs Aussie star Cameron Heeps saying after 'It was one of those nights I burnt out 2 clutches and I was trying to chase it to find the setup. We'll put tonight behind us though and move onto Newcastle and try and at least finish the away matches with a win'

As is so often the case at Shielfield gating was paramount and the home men were on fire in that regard. None more so than Jye Etheridge who raced to a paid max.

The Bandits are still chasing their own playoff dreams and they knew they could not afford to slip up and after that fast start they put the hammer down further recording maximum heat advantages in each of heats 5,6,7 and 8. The second of these the best of the bunch as Ben Barker went from last to 2nd in the only real race of note in the meeting.

The Monarchs did show some spirit with a pair of 4-2 advantages in heats 9 and 10 but the match was long gone by then and the home men padded their advantage with a further 4 heat advantages in the last 5 races.

The last of these came in heat 15 after Jim McGregor as is so often the case decided that a meeting he officiates could not go without his involvement disqualifying Josh Pickering for lifting at the start much to the astonishment of all 3 sets of fans in the stadium.

So it's on to Newcastle on Sunday night as the Monarchs look to end the year with an away win to break a year long duck.