Thursday September 14, 2017
While the ‘Cases’ Somerset Rebels home leg of their SGB Premiership KO Cup semi-final has been agreed as Friday 22nd September, that does not tell the whole story behind finally settling on that date, as team manager Garry May explains;

“We had originally offered Wolverhampton Friday 15th for our home leg, but their promotion rejected this date as their number 1, Fredrik Lindgren, would not be available as he was contracted to ride in a meeting in Germany and, as such, Wolves would not be granted a facility for his absence.”

“The problem with the next available date, Friday 22nd, was that although Lindgren would still be absent, the fact he would be away at the next round of the Grand Prix series meant that Wolves would be granted the use of a guest rider.”

“But that was not the end of the problems surrounding that date, as Wolves could also be with Jacob Thorssell, who could also be competing at the Stockholm Grand Prix, and we would be without our reserve duo of Jake Allen and Lewis Kerr who would be required to ride for Scunthorpe that evening as their match against Peterborough had been arranged prior to our Cup tie against Wolves.”

“On top of that, depending on how the SGB Championship Play-Offs pan out, it could also have meant that further riders from both ourselves and Wolves could have been missing due to those Championship commitments, which could have led to the farcical situation of there being 8 guest riders plus the rider replacement facility being used across the two teams.”

“The next available date would have been the following Friday, the 29th, but I felt that was dragging thing out too much, it would have been some 4 weeks then since our previous home match, plus it would have left precious little time to arrange any re-staging which might have been required should the weather have intervened, or if the tie had ended in a draw and required a replay.”

“So, the easiest date upon which to stage our home leg of the tie was Friday 15th, but Wolves are obviously worried that with a 4-point rider in place of Lindgren at number 1, that might swing the tie our way, despite, given our two previous visits to their place, the massive home advantage they would seem to have over us, so we have finally gone ahead with Friday the 22nd, which means that we will at least get preference on any of our riders who might be required to ride in any potential SGB Championship play-off meeting which might be subsequently scheduled for that same night.”

“It just seems to me that everything with this tie has revolved around what Wolverhampton wanted and Lindgren’s commitments, which has meant that matters have been dragged out, instead of being sorted out and completed in a timely manner.”

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