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BIRMINGHAM boss Laurence Rogers says the pressure is off his side ahead of tonight’s (Wednesday) Championship clash with Poole at Perry Barr.

The reigning champions have already collected ten points on the road this season, but did slip up when they visited the Second City last September when they were beaten 49-41.

The Brummies bring in Tom Brennan to guest for the injured Josh Auty, whilst at reserve Joe Thompson replaces James Shanes who is on FIM Long Track of Nations duty.

Rogers said: “We know Poole are one of the favourites for the league this year but it’s these sorts of meetings where we’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain.

“Everyone probably expects Poole to come and beat us and not many people will give us a chance against the reigning Champions.

“But I think our boys can thrive off that. Some of our best riding this year has come when the boys have been more relaxed.

“So with no pressure on their shoulders, hopefully they can go out there, make some starts and it goes without saying it would be nice to get one over the Pirates.”

Poole boss Neil Middleditch said: “Of course we are hoping to go there and keep this mini-unbeaten away run going, but it won’t be a walk in the park for us. As always, we will all need to be on our game.

“Birmingham can be a bit of a trick track but they have done a fair amount of work on it since we were last there and I haven’t had any bad reports about it this year, which is good.”

BIRMINGHAM: Claus Vissing, Stefan Nielsen, Justin Sedgmen, Ashley Morris, Tom Brennan, Joe Thompson, James Pearson.
POOLE: Danny King, Zach Cook, Steve Worrall, Ben Cook, Richard Lawson, Drew Kemp, Nathan Ablitt