Luke Ruddick is ready to roll for Edinburgh Monarchs after concussion lay-off

Edinburgh Monarchs reserve Luke Ruddick is fully fit again following his crash against Glasgow Tigers and hopes to receive the ideal tonic by helping Monarchs to glory against Berwick Bandits in tomorrow night’s Championship encounter at Shielfield Park.

Friday, 14th June 2019, 6:30 am
Justin Sedgmen and Luke Ruddick at the front for Monarchs. Sedgmen is injured for this one. Pic: Ron MacNeill

Ruddick suffered concussion when he came to grief against Glasgow but after serving the mandatory nine day lay-off, he says he can’t wait to get back on his bike, but knows the Bandits will present a formidable challenge round their own circuit, especially after they heavily defeated Monarchs in a Championship Shield encounter there earlier in the season.

Ruddick says: “Our aim is do much better this time and there is no reason why we can’t put in a better performance. I don’t think the Shield match came too early in the season for the team, certainly it did not for me, and I think we have got a good chance second time around.”

Monarchs’ inability to hit the first turn in front from the tapes cost them dearly and left them chasing air. but Ruddick insists: “I think you can pass round Berwick and it’s up to us all to do that.”

Ruddick is doing everything asked of him from reserve and is living up to his starting average. He said: “I’m not doing too bad, all that is required is a bit more consistency with my scoring. I think often I try too hard and I need to calm down a bit and enjoy my speedway a bit more.”

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Ruddick added: “But I go out to win every meeting and I try to improve every time.”

Monarchs team manager Alex Harkess: “Berwick are a good team and are strong at home and it’s important we try to get something from this meeting after failing to pick up anything from our earlier Shield visit. A match point would be nice.”

Monarchs will be without the injured and sidelined Josh Pickering – Glasgow Tigers star Paul Starke is his guest replacement – but Victor Palovaara makes his debut this season as an injury replacement for Justin Sedgmen.

Berwick were carrying injuries to key men, Kevin Doolan, Jye Etheridge, and Coty Garcia, but have named an unchanged line-up for the match, and Berwick ace Aaron Summers admits: “Monarchs will pose a bigger threat than before. We got a really good win against them in the Shield but they always go well round our place, so it will be a hard match.”

Meanwhile, Armadale tonight restages the Scottish Open Championship which was rained off seven days ago. Defending champion Roy Schlein is out to win the crown for a record fifth time after equalling Peter Carr’s haul of four titles in 2018.