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Proctor, Kling and Lemon add juice to Devils' challenge

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: December 24, 2012

Mark Lemon

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New-look Plymouth Devils have announced five of the team members who will contest the Premier League for the Devon side next season.

Number one for the Devils will be the highly-rated Ty Proctor, who will be doubling up for Elite League side Wolverhampton Wolves.

Also signed up for 2013 are Australia team manager Mark Lemon and Poole Pirate Ricky Kling.

Lemon, a Newcastle Diamonds rider with more than 20 years of experience, said on Facebook: "I'm extremely happy and delighted to be joining the Devils for the 2013 Premier League season.

"The challenge excites me in helping elevate the Devils in the league table and pushing the more established teams about in the quest for a play-off place."

Former Devils captain Seemond Stephens is one of the figures behind a group which has bought and re-launched Plymouth.

Lemon said: "It will be good re-establishing a working relationship with Seemond and working with the new Plymouth team and management.

"I'm currently back home in Australia in training mode, getting ready for the Australian Championships with some extra added water skiing activities thrown in to keep cool. I'll be returning to the UK in February eager to get started."

Cory Gathercole, will be returning to St Boniface Arena next season in the same role. Joining him is Todd Kurtz, one of the most improved riders for Devils last season, who will start at reserve.

The Devils nearly went under recently because of doubts over obtaining a long enough lease from St Boniface College, which owns the land on which St Boniface Arena stands and eventually agreed to two years.

The Devils were snapped up by a consortium after former owner Mike Bowden put the Premier League club on the market.

Team manager Lee Trigger said he was delighted the way the team was shaping up.

Negotiations are under way to secure the services of the final two riders in the Devils' line-up.

Trigger said: "All five of them are good riders. We've still got two more deals to finalise, but they are in an advanced stage and we hope to announce they have been completed soon."

The Devils' record in the Premier League, since they joined it two seasons ago, has not been successful.

They were second bottom in their first season and at the very bottom last year.

Trigger insisted: "There's no way we're going to finish anywhere near the bottom next season. We'll be aiming for the play-offs."

Former Premier League Riders' champion James Wright has joined Premier League side Glasgow Tigers for the 2013 campaign after being left out of next season's Somerset Rebels line-up.

Wright helped the Rebels to win this year's Premier League Cup and reach the League play-off final.

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