Thursday 01 June, 2017
STOKE go into the second leg of their National League KO Cup meeting against local rivals Buxton Hitmen at Loomer Road on Saturday night, 7pm.

The A.R. Richards Potters gained a 54-35 victory over the Hitmen last month and therefore hold a nineteen-point lead over their rivals as they look to get back to winning ways having suffered four straight defeats, in contrast the Hitmen have made a couple of changes since the first leg gaining an impressive 66-24 win over the Isle of Wight last Sunday although they lost out to league leaders Belle Vue 62-28 at the National Speedway Stadium on Wednesday night.

The Potters team has been shuffled around this week with the new averages coming into force. Mitchell Davey will remain at number one while the Potters will use rider replacement for injured skipper Tony Atkin. David Wallinger moves into the main body of the team with Shaun Tedham switching to reserve with Josh Embleton who is a Newcastle asset and highly thought of by the Diamonds promotion coming in at reserve as a guest for the retired David Speight.

Buxton team manager Jason Pipe has been busy in the transfer market and brought in Max Clegg who gives the Hitmen two very strong heat leaders with Matt Williamson teaming up with his former Cradley colleague although Williamson will miss the meeting due to being on Championship duty the Hitmen have drafted in last seasons’ Potters top man Ben Wilson as a guest. Shelby Rutherford, Tom Woolley and second new signing Ben Basford can form a solid second-string trio while at reserve Carl Basford and Lee Geary complete the Derbyshire septet.

Potters team manager Malcolm Vasey commented “Despite holding a nineteen-point lead from the first leg we cannot take Buxton lightly since they have made changes since both teams met at Hi-Edge last month bringing in one of the top riders in the league in Max Clegg and they have drafted in Ben Wilson as a replacement for Matt Williamson. They have definitely improved after a difficult start to their season and we will need to be at them right from the start to hopefully we ourselves can get back to winning ways and move into the next round.”

STOKE: Mitchell Davey, Tony Atkin Rider Replacement, Ryan Terry-Daley, David Wallinger, Luke Priest, Josh Embleton, Shaun Tedham
BUXTON: Max Clegg, Ben Basford, Tom Woolley, Shelby Rutherford, Ben Wilson, Lee Geary, Carl Basford