Saturday July 04, 2009
BIRMINGHAM were again close to an away victory but in the end had to settle for a point from a narrow defeat at Loomer Road.

Premier League Pairs champions Jason Lyons and Tomasz Piszcz required a 5-1 from the last race to snatch the win, but after a stoppage when Piszcz came down on the second bend, home skipper Lee Complin raced away for his third straight win to leave the Brummies four points adrift.

As expected, it was a close encounter although the Brummies were forced to use rider-replacement for the unwell Robert Ksiezak - and whilst Ludvig Lindgren responded well from his no-score at Sheffield on Thursday, Manuel Hauzinger disappointed again.

On the positive side, Jay Herne made a good impression on his first appearance this season, and his 5-1 with Piszcz over ex-Brummies Phil Morris and Lee Smart in Heat 11 levelled the scores at 33-33.

Herne could not repeat the feat in Heat 12 as he fell, but Lindgren's race victory kept the visitors in contention - and they edged in front with just two heats to go as Lyons and Piszcz collected a 4-2, split by Bunyan, in Heat 13.

But disaster struck in the penultimate race as Lindgren missed out for the first time, Potters reserve Tom P Madsen coming up with a fast start to partner Complin to a 5-1, swinging the advantage back in the home side's favour.

Brummies were virtually assured of the point for losing by less than seven, but Complin wrecked their hopes in the decider, with Bunyan adding the insurance of third place for the Potters - who, along with fellow Saturday winners Rye House, go ahead of the Brummies in a tight Premier League table.

STOKE 47: Jason Bunyan 11, Lee Complin 10+1, Lee Smart 8+1, Tom P Madsen 8+1, Phil Morris 6, Derek Sneddon 4+1, Klaus Jakobsen R/R.

BIRMINGHAM 43: Jason Lyons 11+1, Ludvig Lindgren 11, Tomasz Piszcz 9, Richard Sweetman 6+1, Jay Herne 5+2, Manuel Hauzinger 1+1, Robert Ksiezak R/R.

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