Image Credit: Jack Cupido

Big Night Ahead In Birmingham

PREVIEW Wednesday 29th September 2021, 9:15am

by Graham Muncie

The What the Fork Monarchs are back in action after a 2 break on Wednesday evening as they head to Birmingham knowing any result better than an 18-point defeat will mean a place in the KO cup semi final and a mouth-watering tie against Glasgow.

The job is far from done though as the Brummies have proved to be a hard nut to crack on their own shale and with boss David Mason having said he is walking away at season's end then the Brummies fans and riders know if they don't overturn the deficit then that could be it for Birmingham speedway unless someone steps in over the winter to take over.

So emotions will be high as the home team look to give their fans at least one more night of action and one man who will lead the way in this is home number 1 Chris Harris, the former world number 6 is in scintillating form just now putting in big scores home and away for both the Brummies and as witnessed on Eurosport on Monday night for Peterborough also and he will lead the charge.

The rest of the Brummies line-up also sees one further change free scoring reserve Paco Castagna misses out with illness with Plymouth man Dillon Ruml stepping in. Elsewhere main back up to Harris will be expected from Erik Riss, the middle order of James Shanes and Ashley Morris can never be discounted either.

The key battle may come at reserve where if the Monarchs can subdue Ruml and Jack Thomas that will go a long way to providing a basis for overall victory, this task now a little easier perhaps as Castagna powered to 13 points on the Monarchs last visit to Perry Barr although Ruml will give his all and recorded a very impressive 8+1 from the number 2 spot on a previous visit to Perry Barr.

For the What the Fork Monarchs there is only one change to the usual line-up that coming at reserve where Nathan Greaves of course has stepped down meaning a guest is required, stepping in is Kent's Dan Gilkes, the youngster having recorded a 7-point haul on the Kings visit to Brum earlier in the season.

As mentioned, the rest of the line-up is as per usual, and the heavy lifting will be expected from Sam, Richie and Josh the latter in particular looking to put a nightmare night behind him from our last visit.

That came only 2 weeks ago as the Monarchs went down by 14 points on a night that all but clinched the Armadale men's playoff position.

A repeat of that score-line would suffice for the Monarchs to progress on Wednesday evening, but the hope will be that the Blue and Gold can go a little better than that and save any nerves come those last few heats.

For those unable to attend live updates will be available on the Monarchs website with tapes up at 7.30pm!