Glasgow Tigers 46, Berwick Bandits 43: Berwick travelled to Glasgow on Sunday for the return leg of their League Cup fixture against the Tigers and almost pulled off a win.
After ten races they were 28-31 to the good, but the loss of skipper Ricky Ashworth, who suffered concussion when he took a heavy fall whilst leading heat 11, saw a dramatic swing in fortunes for the Bandits.
For the visitors, who up to that stage had provided six heat winners, suddenly lost their swagger, and within three races the home side had turned things around and virtually had the meeting won.
First of all the evergreen James Grieves pipped David Bellego in the re-run, then two successive 5-1s, from guest Jason Garrity and James Wright, then Grieves and Joe Screen, saw the Tigers move 42-35 in front and suddenly the Bandits were facing an uphill battle.
Reserve Nicki Barrett won heat 14 - his third race victory of the afternoon- but the 2-4 meant that at 44-39 Glasgow were home and dry.
Barrett went on to complete a successful afternoon’s work with his fourth race win in 15, guaranteeing Bandits a losing bonus point, but all thoughts were with Ashworth, hoping that the Bandits’ injury jinx from last season had not continued at this early stage of the new campaign.
Earlier in the meeting Berwick looked as if they might push Glasgow all the way on their Ashfield track.
Bellego and Barrett won the two opening races, and with Ashworth and Kozza Smith also taking the chequered flag, along with Barrett who won a twice re-run heat eight, there wasn’t much to separate the sides.
Screen and Grieves were a constant danger, as expected, but James Wright recovered from his poor performance at Shielfield the night before and he dropped only one point in his first four outings.
Bandits’ new boy Matty Wethers weighed in with a more than useful win over Screen in heat ten, but then the wheels fell off.
In a fine gesture by the new Glasgow promotion, the Berwick Supporters’ Club bus to the meeting was paid for by the new Tigers’ owners.
Berwick boss John Anderson said: “We would publicly like to thank Glasgow for their gesture in paying for the bus, which will only go to foster better relations between the two clubs.”
J Screen - EF, 3, 2, 2’ = 7+1
J Ringwood - 2, FX, X, 0 = 2
J Wright - 3, 2, 3, 2’, 0 = 10+1
H Bager - 1, 1’, 1, 0 = 3+1
J Grieves - 3, 2, 3, 3, 2 = 13
J Garrity - 1’, 0, 1, 3, 2 = 7+1
J Jacobs - 2, 0, 2, X = 4
Berwick Bandits 43
R Ashworth - 1, 3, FX = 4
D Bellego - 3, 0, FX, 2 = 5
K Smith - 2, 3, 1, 1, 1 = 8
M Wethers - 0, 1, 3, 1 = 5
R Aspegren - 2, 2, 2, 1 = 7
A Edberg - 0, 1’, 0, 0 = 1+1
N Barrett - 3, 1’, 3, 0, 3, 3 = 13+1
Referee - Graham Reeve.