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WOLVERHAMPTON rounded off their regular Premiership campaign with a 54-36 defeat at Peterborough.

Whilst the Parrys International Wolves are safely through to the play-offs and the Panthers have missed out, the home team have ended the season as one of the league’s in-form sides and again showed their strength on their own circuit.

They had run up 58 points against Leicester on Thursday to rule the Lions out of the top four, and Wolves found themselves limited to just two race wins as the Panthers dominated.

The hosts took the lead with a 5-1 in Heat 2 as Ben Cook led from the start and Jordan Jenkins moved inside Leon Flint at the end of the first lap, and indeed home riders took the flag in each of the first four races.

Cook was involved in another maximum with Vadim Tarasenko in Heat 4 after Ryan Douglas had taken a heavy fall heading into the first bend in the first staging of the race.

But the visitors did get on the board in Heat 5 when Sam Masters and Steve Worrall combined to squeeze out Chris Harris for a 5-1 to narrow the gap to four points.

However, the Panthers then reeled off a series of heat advantages to take full control of the meeting, with four successive 4-2s extending their margin despite a fine effort by Worrall in Heat 8 which was just denied by Niels-Kristian Iversen.

The home side also looked set for a 5-1 in Heat 9 but Douglas worked hard to split Benjamin Basso and Harris at the start of the last lap – before more problems for Schlein, who touched the tapes and was disqualified from Heat 10, with Iversen defeating Luke Becker in the re-run.

Cook was electric from the start as the Panthers collected another maximum from Heat 11, Masters and Worrall unable to make an impression on this occasion, and that extended the lead to 18 points.

Becker, who was Wolves’ top performer on the night, collected their second win in Heat 12 with Zach Cook snatching third place from Jenkins on the run to the line, with the home rider falling after the race.

And there was drama in Heat 14 when Harris passed both Schlein and Flint for what looked like a 5-1, only for leader Ben Cook to drop a chain on the last bend – although that had no material effect on the result.

Wolves now have a fortnight off to prepare for their big play-off semi-final against Sheffield at Monmore on September 25.

PETERBOROUGH 54: Vadim Tarasenko 13, Niels-Kristian Iversen 11, Ben Cook 10+2, Benjamin Basso 8, Chris Harris 5, Richard Lawson 4, Jordan Jenkins 3+1.

WOLVERHAMPTON 36: Luke Becker 11, Ryan Douglas 7, Steve Worrall 6+2, Sam Masters 6+1, Rory Schlein 2+2, Zach Cook 2, Leon Flint 2.

Top scorer for Wolves Luke Becker


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