Berwick Bandits get back to winning ways

Berwick New Holland Bandits 53 Glasgow Western Commercial Tigers 42

Premier League

Berwick were desperately keen to bounce back after the disappointing night at Edinburgh the night before but Ricky Ashworth, mounted on a sick machine, soon retired from Heat One and although David Bellego battled well with Joe Screen up front the Tiger got the three points in a visitors’ 2-4.

Guest reserve man Adam Ellis, in for the injured Nicki Barrett, took Heat Two as if he’d ridden Berwick for years but with Paul Starke at the rear the 3-3 made no difference to the deficit.

A rolling start for Henning Bager gave him the impetus to roar round Matthew Wethers but the Bandit powered back and soared round the Glasgow man but at the back Robin Aspegren slid off with another 3-3 going into he book and the score now 8-10.

Following another 3-3 in the fourth, Aspegren and Wethers made a blistering gate over Screen and the comeback kid Andre Compton, who failed to get back on terms with the Bandits, hit home a solid 5-1 to go into the lead 16-14.

Bellego powered round James Grieves with Ashworth finding his feet once more to force his way under Joey Ringwood off bend four to take a Bandits ‘ 4-2 and increase their lead to four points.

Ellis again stunned the crowd by taking the win in Heat Seven with ease over Smith in the fastest time of the night as part of a home 5-1 before the shared 3-3s returned in Heat Eight with the score now 28-20.

Wethers took second place in Heat Nine’s 5-1 despite losing his steel shoe on the second lap which allowed Bager to come out in the 10th as a tactical rider for double points, and after again moving at the gate, took a brief lead before Bellego took a brave lunge round the outside off bend two through a nonexistent gap to restrict the heat score to a 4-4 taking the score to 37-25.

Screen came out as a second tactical in Heat 11 and took an early lead with Smith on his tail and despite a fine effort behind by the Berwick skipper the six points belonged to the Tigers in the 3-6 result to reduce the Berwick lead to 40-31.

Ashworth shot dramatically round Screen in Heat 13 off bend two as Smith weaved his way through to join Ashworth up front. But, coming off the fourth bend of the third lap, Ashworth seemed to lose power and he slid at speed into the fence with the referee awarding the race a 3-3 after the exclusion of the former but the match had been won by Berwick with two races remaining.

Team manager Ian Rae said: “Again the lads - after a sluggish start - really started to bang the points in and took Glasgow for everything they could.

“It was a good determined performance and we took all three Premier League points - not a bad night’s work.”