Boss Cook praises Hammers hopefuls

PUBLISHED: 08:29 06 September 2011

Lakeside Hammers duo Kim Nilsson and Jonas Davidsson (Rob Newell/TGS)

Lakeside Hammers duo Kim Nilsson and Jonas Davidsson (Rob Newell/TGS)

Rob Newell c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football League images are subject to DataCo Licencing restrictions

Play-off place within touching distance

Lakeside Hammers Co Promoter Jon Cook was full of praise for the club’s fans and riders after a last heat decider saw them take all three Elite League points on offer against Birmingham.

The 51-42 success at Purfleet in their final match of the regular season enabled play-off chasing Hammers to reach their target of 46 points.

And now they must wait to see if it will be enough to clinch a top-four place, with rivals Kings Lynn and Coventry still having two meetings to race.

A delighted Cook said: “That was one for the fans. They have been absolutely superb this year and their level of support has never dipped even during our lean form of the early season.

“Crowd figures are up for the fifth year running and to get the level of support we enjoyed on a rearranged fixture, with England playing football, blew us away.

“The atmosphere created was superb and the reception afforded to Lee (Richardson) and JD (Jonas Davidsson) on their extra lap of honour after heat 15 sent all the team and our hardworking backroom staff away absolutely buzzing.”

Cook paid further tribute to the riders, adding: “At the end of the match we had a chat and it’s only Lee, Peter (Ljung) and Rob (Mear) left from the seven who started the season with us, yet the spirit is electric.

“It’s out of our hands now as to whether we make the play-offs but if we do and with Robbo (Stuart Robson) back and TJ (Tomasz Jedrzejak) making our numbers up to the full team of seven riders, plus Kakke (Kauko Nieminen) back in for selection, we will give it one hell of a go.

“And with the cup semi-final to come regardless of the play-offs, the season is coming alive at just the right time.”

Cook confirmed to the big crowd during the introduction of riders prior to the opening heat that Tomasz Jedrzejak would be rejoining the club for the remainder of the season.

Jedrzejak holds a special place in Hammers recent history having joined an injury-ravaged team at the end of the 2008 season and scoring a maximum on his debut against Wolverhampton and then passing a double points riding Leigh Adams in the play-off semi-final against Swindon to all but book the team’s spot in it’s first and, to date, only play-off final appearance.

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