Preview: Poole v King's Lynn


Danny Ford believes the return to action of his dynamic Danes can help the No1 Carpet Cleaning Poole Pirates complete a Premiership Supporters’ Cup miracle.


The Pirates go into Thursday’s clash against King’s Lynn at Wimborne Road (7.30pm) having turned around their cup fortunes with a big maximum-point away win at the Adrian Flux Arena on May 20.


That triumph came after a big defeat at Ipswich, coupled with a home defeat and draw against Swindon, had seemingly ended their Southern Group ambitions.


But a home victory against the Stars on Thursday could still see the Pirates progress to the final – if the Stars can beat Swindon at the Abbey Stadium in their final Southern Group fixture.


Both Nicolai Klindt and Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen were missing in the Pirates’ last outing, a 47-43 home defeat to Peterborough in the Premiership, due to a fixture clash with the Danish Final.


But with both riders back in Poole colours for Thursday’s cup clash, Ford believes their presence can help keep the Pirates’ cup dream alive.


He said: “Having three riders out against Peterborough, with Brady Kurtz injured, really did affect us – it would affect any team.


“But with Nicolai and Nikolaj back for Thursday, our one-to-seven has a much stronger feel.


“Nico Covatti is also riding well having gone so close to qualification in Saturday’s GP qualifier in Glasgow, so I’m confident we can get the job done on Thursday.


Kurtz, who sustained a shoulder injury against Peterborough on May 23, returned to action in Europe on June 2 and has scored well for his Polish and Swedish clubs since.


But the Aussie will be missing from Thursday’s cup encounter due to a fixture in Sweden with Vetlanda, which takes priority over UK cup meetings.


The Pirates will use rider replacement for Kurtz.


The Stars go into Thursday’s clash on the back of a 50-40 defeat at Swindon in the Premiership last week, while the Pirates have not raced since May 30.


New Stars racer Craig Cook, meanwhile, booked his spot in the GP Challenge in Croatia by storming to a 15-point maximum in the GP qualifier at Glasgow on Saturday.


Cook was joined by team-mate Robert Lambert who finished fourth with 12 points, but Pirate Covatti (11) just missed out on qualification alongside Poole asset Chris Holder (11).


Pirates: Jack Holder, Richie Worrall, Nicolai Klindt, Josh Grajczonek, Rider Replacement for Brady Kurtz, Nico Covatti, Nikolaj Busk Jakobsen.


Stars: Robert Lambert, Michael Palm Toft, Ty Proctor, Thomas Jorgensen, Craig Cook, Simon Lambert, Lewis Kerr.


Picture: Taylor Lanning.

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