Sunday August 23, 2015
BIRMINGHAM were left to rue a disastrous two opening heats as they went down 51-42 at Eastbourne.

The Surestop Brummies' narrowly missed out on a consolation league points as their lead at the top of the National League was cut to 11-points.

The Perry Barr outfit were on the receiving end of two 5-1's in the opening couple of races which proved pivotal in the final outcome.

The Brummies restricted the Eagles to just one heat advantage in the second-half of the meeting but a slow start cost the league leaders dearly.

Team Manager Graham Drury was feeling philosophical after the meeting. He said: "Naturally we're disappointed to leave with nothing but for me there is a lot we can build on from that performance.

"If you take away those first two races, it's an admirable effort and has been the difference between us getting something and leaving empty handed.

"Ok there were a few decisions and a few setbacks here and there that played their part but overall we shouldn't be too downhearted.

"Eastbourne's management have admitted that's the toughest test they've had here all season and now we hope to beat them on our own circuit a week on Wednesday."

Adam Ellis bounced back from a first heat exclusion to reel off four straight wins on another top night for the No.1. The 19-year-old was involved in some spectacular races with Bradley Wilson-Dean and set a new Arlington National League track record of 59.1 in heat five.

Zach Wajtknecht put in another classy showing on his way to double-figures while Tom Perry deserved even more than the eight points he managed.

Sam Chapman and Adam Kirby both endured frustrating nights again while there were encouraging signs from Alex Wilson and guest Jack Smith which their scores definitely don't reflect.

EASTBOURNE 51: Bradley Wilson-Dean 13, Kelsey Dugard 8, Daniel Spiller 7+2, Richard Andrews 6+2, Ben Hopwood 6+1, Marc Owen 6, Georgie Wood 5+3.

BIRMINGHAM 42: Adam Ellis 15, Zach Wajtknecht 12, Tom Perry 8, Sam Chapman 3, Adam Kirby 2, Jack Smith 1+1, Alex Wilson 1.


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