Friday September 09, 2020
PETERBOROUGH will not give up on their Premier League play-off dream despite suffering a major body blow on Friday night.

The ‘T Balfe Construction’ Panthers’ new-look team slipped to a 48-45 home defeat at the hands of fellow top-six hopefuls Workington.

The latest East of England Showground setback of 2016 led to Peterborough slipping out of the play-off zone for the first time all season.

It arrived despite a fine return to the club for top Danish star Kenneth Bjerre, who scored 12 points, while number one Craig Cook roared to a sparkling haul of 16+1 which included a successful double-points mission.

But Anders Thomsen, who added nine points, was the only other rider to taste success on a night when the four remaining team members - captain Ulrich Ostergaard, the returning Richard Hall, reserve guest Jake Knight and Danny Halsey - could only contribute eight points between them.

Team boss Carl Johnson said: “We only had three riders scoring points and they didn’t have the required back up.

“For this line-up to work we need all four of the big-guns firing and the ability for the other guys to pick up the odd second or third place here and there as well.

"Zdenek Holub missing the meeting to travel to his European Under 21 Final tonight certainly didn't help as we know he has the ability to score good points at the Showground.

"The end result is us being beaten at home again and falling out of the top six, but the season is far from over and we will keep fighting while there is a chance of making the play-offs.

“We remain full of belief that we have a team which can seriously challenge for the title if we make it, but the challenge now is getting in there.

“First and foremost we need to focus on beating Rye House on Monday night and then potentially having to go to Edinburgh to get a result.

“We might end up having to go up there when not at our strongest from the dates I’ve been informed about, but that’s a situation we will have to deal with.”

Peterborough found themselves 12 points behind after just four races against Workington last night following a nightmare start to the meeting.

They did eat into their arrears as Thomsen inspired a 4-2 in heat five before Cook cashed in a tactical ride in the next race when Panthers pocketed a 7-2.

The gap grew again despite a last-gasp blast from Hall to snatch second spot in heat eight before Thomsen and skipper Ostergaard replied immediately with their second 4-2 gain of the night in the next race.

Workington top-scorer Kenneth Hansen, so often a star guest for Panthers this season, edged his side further clear with a heat 12 triumph in a Comets 4-2 before Peterborough big-guns Bjerre and Cook roared to a 5-1 in heat 13 to provide real hope of a fairytale fightback.

But it was quickly snatched away as Thomsen was beaten by fellow Danish rider Rasmus Jensen in the penultimate contest with that 4-2 gain sealing Workington’s success.

Peterborough are back in action on Monday when hosting Rye House in their final home meeting of the regular season (7.30pm).

They now sit seventh in the Premier League standings, two points behind Ipswich and Sheffield, who occupy the final two play-off spots.


PETERBOROUGH ‘T BALFE CONSTRUCTION’ PANTHERS: Craig Cook 16+1, Kenneth Bjerre 12, Anders Thomsen 9, Ulrich Ostergaard 4, Richard Hall 3, Jake Knight (guest) 1, Danny Halsey 0.

WORKINGTON: Kenneth Hansen 11+1, Rasmus Jensen 8+2, Matt Williamson 8+1, Ricky Wells 8, Claus Vissing 7, Mason Campton 3+1, Adam Roynon 3.

1 - Wells (60.6), Wells, Campton, Hall. 2-4, 2-4.
2 - Roynon (61.6), Williamson, Knight, Halsey (fell). 1-5, 3-9.
3 - Jensen (60.2), Hansen, Thomsen, Ostergaard. 1-5, 4-14.
4 - Vissing (60.), Bjerre, Williamson, Halsey (ret). 2-4, 6-18.
5 - re-run Thomsen (60.5), Wells, Ostergaard, Campton. 4-2, 10-20.
6 - re-run Cook (t/r, 61.1), Vissing, Hall, Roynon (fell/exc). 7-2, 17-22.
7 - Bjerre (60.4), Hansen, Jensen, Knight. 3-3, 20-25.
8 - Williamson (61.8), Hall, Campton, Halsey. 2-4, 22-29.
9 - Thomsen (61.7), Vissing, Ostergaard, Roynon. 4-2, 26-31.
10 - Cook (61.6), Hansen, Jensen, Hall. 3-3, 29-34.
11 - re-run Bjerre (60.9), Wells, Campton, Knight (fell/exc). 3-3, 32-37.
12 - Hansen (61.8), Ostergaard, Williamson, Halsey. 2-4, 34-41.
13 - Bjerre (61.0), Cook, Wells, Vissing. 5-1, 39-42.
14 - Jensen (61.8), Thomsen, Williamson, Halsey. 2-4, 41-46.
15 - Cook (61.8), Hansen, Bjerre, Wells (ret). 4-2, 45-48.

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