LEICESTER return to ROWE Motor Oil Premiership action on Monday with a vital trip to Oxford where three league points are available.

The Watling JCB Lions are level with the Spires on 11 points and have a match in hand, having moved into the top four with last week’s 54-36 home win over the same opponents.

That means the aggregate point at the very least is within their grasp, but a second away win of the season in the league would also be a big one in the context of the play-off race, even at this relatively early stage of the season.

And the Lions travel to Cowley with plenty of track knowledge, with Sam Masters having been a regular member of Oxford’s Championship side in the last two seasons.

Manager Stewart Dickson has moved Masters to No.5 in the riding order for the meeting, meaning Luke Becker and Ryan Douglas team up in the middle order, whilst Craig Cook lines up at reserve against the club for whom he recently completed a 28-day stint as injury cover.

Elsewhere, skipper Max Fricke goes into the meeting off the back of a positive return to Grand Prix competition at the weekend, having reached the semi-finals in Prague.

Oxford have won four of their five home matches in the Premiership so far, but all have been close meetings with three of them by a margin of 47-43, and the other being 46-44.

The Spires name a full one-to-seven with Lewis Kerr due back from injury, whilst Erik Riss could be a key figure at reserve alongside former Lion Cubs youngster Ashton Boughen who is now scoring freely in the Championship.

Dickson said: “We’re 18 points up from last Monday which obviously puts us in a decent position for the aggregate point.

“But it’s a big, big meeting for us and if we can get a win on the night as well it could be very significant for the play-offs.

“We were disappointed to go out of the Cup last week but now it’s about moving on to Monday night. We have riders who know the Oxford track and can go well there, and it’s definitely one we want to win.”

OXFORD: Rohan Tungate, Charles Wright, Lewis Kerr, Maciej Janowski, Chris Harris, Erik Riss, Ashton Boughen.

LEICESTER: Max Fricke, Richard Lawson, Luke Becker, Ryan Douglas, Sam Masters, Craig Cook, Sam Hagon.

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July 18, 2024 19.30

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