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PREVIEW: POOLE v PLYMOUTH (KOC)

POOLE take an eight-point lead into the second leg of their KO Cup tie with Plymouth at Wimborne Road tonight (Wednesday).

It’s the first of ten meetings in 21 days for the home side and the first meeting at the stadium since Covid-19 restrictions were lifted.

The Pirates are still unable to track new signing Ondrej Smetana, and with a short-term facility now expired they bring in Kyle Bickley who meets the criteria with an average 25% below Smetana’s assessed figure.

The meeting features the return of Pirates legend Bjarne Pedersen on the Gladiators’ side, although Jason Crump is ruled out after his crash on Tuesday.

Poole star Stefan Nielsen said: “It has been quite a slow start with a couple of weeks off in between some meetings which isn’t ideal of course, especially after a whole season lay-off for most of us.

“But I feel well-prepared for the up-and-coming busy weeks ahead, so hopefully I can translate that preparation into some good scores for Poole.

“I just want to see the place packed again and be able to her the full noise of the Poole Pirates fans. That would be awesome.”

POOLE: Rory Schlein, Kyle Bickley, Steve Worrall, Stefan Nielsen, Danny King, Ben Cook, Danyon Hume.
PLYMOUTH: TBC, Dillon Ruml, Zach Cook, Zane Keleher, Bjarne Pedersen, Alfie Bowtell, Jack Smith.