LEICESTER face a vital double mission on Bank Holiday Monday as the pressure builds in the race for the Sports Insure Premiership play-offs.

The Watling JCB Lions travel to leaders Belle Vue for a midday start, before hosting King’s Lynn at the Pidcock Motorcycles Arena, Beaumont Park at 8pm.

The position in the league table is that the Lions are on 29 points, two adrift of fourth-placed Ipswich who have just one match to go. Assuming the Witches win at King’s Lynn next Monday they will finish on 34 – meaning the Lions will almost certainly need six points to make the play-offs, although five would be possible if they can take a big home win on Monday.

The first job is to come away with some reward from Belle Vue, as the Lions won the reverse fixture 52-38 back in mid-June when their form was much stronger.

And then a home win over the Stars would also include the aggregate point, although the Norfolk side enjoyed a welcome boost on Thursday with a shock victory over the Aces.

That result was inspired by recent signing and club hero Robert Lambert, who becomes the latest top-line Grand Prix star to visit Beaumont Park, although the Stars have injury issues elsewhere with Nicolai Klindt and Thomas Jorgensen on the long-term absentee list, and recent signing Emil Breum crashed out on Thursday although he avoided any broken bones. Kye Thomson comes in to guest.

The Stars have been well served at reserve in recent weeks by Simon Lambert and Anders Rowe, who combined for a remarkable 26 points against Belle Vue.

Lions boss Stewart Dickson has underlined the importance of the day, which will set things up for next week when they visit Wolverhampton and Peterborough.

And he’s looking for his side to snap out of their recent run and at least return from Manchester with another point on the board.

Dickson said: “The aggregate point has to be the target, and normally a few weeks ago you’d have said we’d be pretty confident of going up there and getting it with the 14-point advantage.

“At the moment I’m not 100 per cent sure, I’ve got to be honest about that. Ideally we need to get a point at Belle Vue and then of course we need to win at home in the evening, but the riders need to get lifted.

“They are still good riders but there’s a crisis going through the team and it’s like a cancer – we’ve got to get rid of it.”

BELLE VUE: Brady Kurtz, Tom Brennan, Jaimon Lidsey, Charles Wright, Dan Bewley, Norick Blodorn, Connor Bailey.
LEICESTER: Max Fricke, Justin Sedgmen, Richie Worrall, Craig Cook, Richard Lawson, Jake Allen, Drew Kemp.

LEICESTER: Max Fricke, Craig Cook, Richard Lawson, Justin Sedgmen, Richie Worrall, Jake Allen, Drew Kemp.
KING’S LYNN: Robert Lambert, Nicolai Klindt r/r, Kye Thomson, Connor Mountain, Michael Palm Toft, Simon Lambert, Anders Rowe.

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