Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Trophy Is First of Potential Hat-Trick; Diamonds Hoping to Sparkle in the First Leg of Final

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Trophy Is First of Potential Hat-Trick; Diamonds Hoping to Sparkle in the First Leg of Final

Article excerpt

Byline: James Hunter

NEWCASTLE Diamonds are in 'uncharted territory' as they chase glory on three fronts this season, starting with tomorrow's Premier Trophy final first leg against Birmingham Brummies.

Not since Newcastle won the Premier League title in 2001 has silverware come to Tyneside but this season the Diamonds are in the title ra ce, the Trophy final and the semi-final of the Knock-out Cup.

Reaching the Trophy final is a first for the Diamonds, but if they beat the Brummies at Brough Park tomorrow and then keep up their 100% road record in this season's competition in the return on Wednesday, they will end their nineyear trophy drought.

Team boss George English said: "We've never had a season like this where we are competing on all fronts, because of course we have never been this far in the Trophy. So this is uncharted territory in that respect.

"We said at the start of the season that we wanted to be competitive in every competition and we are certainly managing to do that at the moment.

"One thing that has helped us this season is that we have retained six of the same seven riders that we had last year, so we were hitting the ground running. But, historically, the Premier Trophy is a competition we have always performed horrendously in - we have never had a break in this competition in 14 years.

"Even when we won the championship in 2001, we never got past the qualifying stage in this competition.

"It's just been a cup competition that has never happened for us until now, which makes it especially exciting to be in the final this year.

"We thoroughly deserve to be in the final, as do Birmingham as they are a very strong side as well."

Diamonds will have Dane Rene Bach - who missed last night's league match at Scunthorpe Scorpions - available again, meaning that they will be at full strength tomorrow. …

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