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Lakeside clash is win or bust for Pirates says Ford
PROMOTER Matt Ford admits Pirates must take maximum points tonight - or face a nightmare end to their play-off dream.
The Hammers, who have one meeting in hand, sit four points above Pirates, who are one clear of fast-finishing form side Peterborough.
After this showdown, injury-hit Lakeside will visit King's Lynn and Swindon, while Poole's final league clash will come at Belle Vue a week today.
But Pirates chief Ford believes that will count for little if Neil Middleditch's men fail to strike a big three-point blow against the Hammers.
Ford said: “If we don't beat Lakeside by seven points or more, our season is over.
“This is a must-win meeting. If we do not collect maximum points from it, there is absolutely no way back.
“With a win by a score of seven points or more, we keep our league season alive, but we would still have it all to do at Belle Vue.
“My heart is hoping that this will not be our final team meeting of the season at Wimborne Road. I so much want to scrape into the play-offs.
“We have never been in the top four all season but that fourth place looks like a shining trophy to us right now. With the fans behind us, we can still make a last-ditch grab for it.
“We have never given up and never accepted that the season is over, despite all the knocks and setbacks we have suffered. In fact, I believe the opposite to be true in that it has made our resolve even greater.”
Lakeside, captained by former Poole favourite Davey Watt, have drafted in track specialist Chris Harris as a guest for injured Peter Karlsson.
The visitors will utilise rider replacement for Sebastian Ulamek, while the Hammers will also hand a debut to reserve Tyson Nelson, who comes in for Kevin Doolan.
Pirates have named a full-strength one-to-seven.
Pirates: (from) Dyer, Grajczonek, Hancock, Janowski, Jonasson, Tungate, Ward.
Hammers: (from) Bridger, Harris (guest), Lawson, Nelson, Swiderski, R/R for Ulamek, Watt.
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