Saturday August 04, 2012
PETERBOROUGH picked up another good point on the road and remain within striking distance of Eastbourne after a 47-43 defeat at Arlington on Saturday.

Panthers worked hard to restrict their hosts despite struggling at reserve, and in-form Jason Doyle proved to be a superb guest for the injured Olly Allen, with the visitors also missing Michael Jepsen Jensen on World U21 commitments.

The result leaves Peterborough eight points behind the Eagles in the Elite League table, but they have five home matches in hand on the Sussex side, and the difference between the points split from the night being 2-1 compared to 3-0 could be crucial – if Panthers can now make the Showground a genuine fortress.

Doyle gave a clear indication of what was to follow when he outpaced home No.1 Joonas Kylmakorpi in the first race, and there then followed a trading of 5-1s as the sides exchanged a two point lead, before the Eagles extended their advantage with maximum points from Cameron Woodward and Simon Gustafsson in Heat 5.

A 4-2 in Heat 6 took the lead up to eight points, but Doyle and Linus Sundstrom responded for Panthers in a twice re-run Heat 7, seeing off Cameron Woodward after Denis Gizatullin had crashed out.

Gustafsson and Woodward restored the Eagles’ margin by taking a 5-1 from Heat 9, and the next race could have spelt problems for Panthers before Sundstrom and Doyle relegated Lukas Dryml to the back.

Kenneth Bjerre and Krzysztof Buczkowski then brought Panthers right back into contention with a 5-1 in Heat 11 and two shared heats followed with Doyle riding superbly in Heat 12 to go round the field on the first two turns.

Panthers’ hopes of victory on the night were ended in Heat 14 when Woodward and Timo Lahti kept Sundstrom at bay, and that left the visitors needing an advantage from the last race to take a league point and also restrict the hosts.

Doyle and Bjerre proved to be up for the task and shot clear of Kylmakorpi and Woodward to ensure the Panthers grabbed their second league point of the season at Arlington – and now they need to ensure there are no slip-ups back at home.

EASTBOURNE 47: Joonas Kylmakorpi 13+1, Timo Lahti 11+2, Cameron Woodward 10+1, Simon Gustafsson 8+1, Denis Gizatullin 3+1, Lukas Dryml 2+1, Lewis Bridger r/r.

PETERBOROUGH 43: Jason Doyle 15+2, Linus Sundstrom 11+1, Kenneth Bjerre 9+2, Krzysztof Buczkowski 7, Todd Kurtz 1, Norbert Kosciuch 0, Michael Jepsen Jensen r/r.

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