Sheffield Tigers 51, Cradley Heathens 49: Sissis is the star, as Tigers edge thriller

Arthur Sissis on the outside of Matt Williamson in heat four
Arthur Sissis on the outside of Matt Williamson in heat four

Sheffield Tigers beat the famous Cradley Heathens 51-49 in an entertaining encounter in front of a bumper crowd at Owlerton last night.

The meeting was close right from the off with the opening five races all ending in a 3-3 shared heat.

Ben Wilson leads Paco Castagna in heat five

Ben Wilson leads Paco Castagna in heat five

Former Tiger Ben Wilson guested for Cradley and won heat one against his hometown club.

Heat two saw guests Chris Widman and Alex Wilson settle for second and third before a great debut ride from Paco Castagna saw the Italian round teenage ace Zach Wajtknecht on the opening lap of heat three.

Arthur Sissis took the win in heat four after passing the Heathens duo of Ellis Perks and Matt Williamson before Ben Wilson made it two-out-of-two for the visitors in the fifth with the scores tied 15 a-piece.

A race advantage was finally registered and the two sides were split after Josh Bates, who was returning to the track after a bout of tonsillitis, combined with guest Rob Shuttleworth for a Tigers 4-2.

The impressive Sissis made it six-points-out-of six in heat seven before the visitors pulled level with a 4-2 of their own in heat eight.

A run of heat advantages gave the Tigers some breathing space, with 4-2’s in heats nine, ten and 11.

The powerful Sheffield spearhead of Castagna, Bates and Sissis took the race wins with guests Danny Ayres, Shuttleworth and Widman picking up the vital minor points.

Castagna made it three race wins out four in heat 12 before a first 5-1 of the night came in heat 13 for the Tigers with Sissis and Bates combining for a maximum race advantage to assure Sheffield of the win on the night.

An impressive ride from Ayres claimed an eighth shared heat of the night in heat 14 before a final race 4-2 advantage saw Sissis claim his first ever, full maximum in British speedway.

Sheffield 51: Arthur Sissis 15, Paco Castagna 12, Josh Bates 10+1, Danny Ayres 5+1, Rob Shuttleworth 5+1, Chris Widman 3, Alex Wilson 1+1.

Cradley 39: Ellis Perks 13+1, Matt Williamson 8+1, Zach Wajtknecht 7+1, Ben Wilson 6, Michael Neale 4+2, Arron Mogridge 1, Tyler Govier 0.