Double injury blow for Panthers ahead of East Anglian derby

Peterborough Panthers' Hans Andersen will miss the Witches' clash with a wrist problem
Peterborough Panthers' Hans Andersen will miss the Witches' clash with a wrist problem

Hans Andersen and Ty Proctor ruled out for trip to Ipswich

Rock-bottom Panthers have been a dealt a double injury blow ahead of their East Anglian derby trip to Ipswich on Thursday, August 22 - but it could become a triple whammy.

Captain Hans Andersen and second string Ty Proctor have both been ruled out of the SGB Premiership clash against the play-off bound Witches at Foxhall Stadium.

Andersen sits out due to the wrist problem which also forced his withdrawal from the A47 derby defeat at King’s Lynn on Monday, while Proctor aggravated a long-standing back problem during the same meeting in which he failed to score.

And the Panthers side which heads to Suffolk could end up being even more depleted with team boss Carl Johnson revealing that British champion Charles Wright is only ‘50/50’ to line up.

Wright aggravated a shoulder injury – initially sustained in a heavy crash during a home defeat to Belle Vue in early July – at King’s Lynn.

“It’s obviously not ideal to have riders missing, but there is nothing we can do about it,” admitted team boss Johnson.

“Hans was clearly struggling to hold onto the bike at King’s Lynn and he needs to get some physio on his writ to try to get it right.

“Ty hurt his back again on Monday and feels he needs a few days out. He has been signed off four days by a doctor and hopefully that will give him time to rest and recover.

“Charles has told me that he is only 50/50 after hurting his shoulder again at Lynn.

“It is already going to be a huge ask without Hans and Ty, so we can only hope that Charles is feeling better tomorrow and can line up for us.

“Regardless of who is out, we’ll go to Ipswich determined to give a good account of ourselves and pick up as many points as we can.

“It’s turned into a real season to forget, but there are still five meetings to go in the league and we’re riding for pride.”

Panthers’ team plans were still up in the air late yesterday.

Johnson was intending to use the rider replacement facility to cover the absence of Andersen while attempting to draft in a guest for Proctor.

But that could well change if Wright declares himself unfit for the trip to Suffolk.

Ipswich were promoted into the top flight for this season along with Panthers and have enjoyed an excellent campaign.

They sit second in the standings – three points behind leaders Poole – and are well-placed to secure the top-four finish required for the play-offs.