Weekend Preview – Home and away local derby series

A tough week continues for the Berkshire Cycles Bracknell Bees this weekend as after a midweek game in Peterborough theBasingstoke Bison lie ahead for the Bees in a home and away weekend series.

Doug Sheppard returned to the bench on Wednesday night and Ben Paynter returned from his suspension but Saturday’s game will still see the Baird brothers missing, serving the last game of their suspension before returning for Sunday’s game at the Hive. Vanya Antonov will also return to the line up at the weekend but Josh Martin continues to miss out through illness and Ryan Watt will be absent for the remainder of the season.

As the season stands Bison are edging the head to head following a Bees win in the first match of the season Bison have taken the wins in the following games meaning two wins this weekend would tie the season series for the Bees.

Heading into the weekend the Bison sit one table place above the Bees level on games played so this weekend series could prove key for the finishing positions of both teams.

Mikael Klejna leads the Bison scoring with 53 points, followed by Ashley Tait with 50 points and Russell Cowley with 47. Netminding is taken care of by former Bee Alex Mettam and long term Bison team regular Dan Wellar-Evans.

Leading the scoring for the Bees is Roman Malinik followed by Vanya Antonov and Shaun Thompson.

Head Coach Doug Sheppard looked ahead to the weekend; “We have a very tough week ahead with our midweek game in Peterborough and a double header against Basingstoke. We’ll be facing two top teams short benched before we return home on Sunday and get the Bairds back and Vanya returns from GB Universities. It’ll be good to add Ben Paynter back on Wednesday and we know that we need every player to dig deep and give 100% every shift if we’re to have a successful week.”

Bees play in Basingstoke at 6.30pm on Saturday ahead of the return fixture at the Hive on Sunday, facing off at 6.00pm