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EPL Review: 11-12 February

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The Smith Recycling backed MK Lightning enjoyed a maximum points haul at the weekend – but what about elsewhere in the English Premier League?

EPL Cup finalists Lightning hosted Swindon Wildcats on Saturday looking for revenge for their recent 2-1 defeat in Wiltshire – and they got it, thanks in part to the return of Polish sniper Mikolaj Lopuski after a four month injury layoff. Miko set up Blaz Emersic for the opener then scored the equaliser which forced overtime and eventually penalties. Hull Pirates’ long journey to Basingstoke proved fruitless as they suffered a 7-1 loss, although Peterborough Phantoms’ road trip was more successful – our fellow Cup finalists winning a closely-matched game against Sheffield Steeldogs 6-5. The shock result of the night came from Guildford where 4 second period goals within 10 minutes weren’t enough to stop Telford Tigers taking a 9-4 road win.

On Sunday there was a dress rehearsal for the Cup final first leg as Lightning travelled to Peterborough, backed by a noisy and packed away supporters’ block. Pete Russell’s side marshalled a nightly game well, their hosts unable to find a consolation goal until the final period. Steeldogs enjoyed a rare maximum points weekend after winning a penalty shootout against the travelling Guildford Flames. Hull exacted revenge on the travelling Bison, an Andrew Themar powerplay goal sealing a 3-2 home win. Bracknell Bees, fresh from a fixture-less Saturday, were two goals up on before hosts Swindon began a fight back; the pair continued to trade the lead before going to overtime before Robin Kovar scored the winner.

The weekend’s results mean Lightning made up 2 points on leaders Telford who were without a Sunday fixture, MKL still with a game in hand. Phantoms remain 3rd with 53 points and have played one game more than Lightning. Bracknell remain rooted to the foot of the table on 14 points and Sheffield’s back to back wins sees the pull away, now in 8th on 24 points.

Review: Tracey Richardson