Bulls end Thorne home record

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AFC Mansfield inflicted the first Central Midlands League North Division home defeat of the season on close rivals Thorne Colliery with a 4-1 success at The Welfare Ground, Moorends on Saturday.

A goal on his return to the club from Carl Haslam, a header from Joe Naylor and a brace for man of the match Dean Rick did the damage with Thorne captain Darren Fell scoring for the home side.

The home side started the brighter and it wasn’t until the 20th minute that AFC Mansfield had a shot at goal, Rick doing well down the left flank and delivering a low cross that Danny Wiltshire met first time, although the ball was always rising over the bar.

On 24 minutes the home side had the ball in the back of the net only for the goal to chalked off for a clear push in the box.

A minute later Rick saw his effort saved by Rob Chester’s feet as the keeper scrambled forward to deny the striker.

The Bulls were labouring and Thorne were having the better of the play.

Manager Micky Taylor sent Carl Haslam over to the left flank to take advantage of the lack of pace of full back Glen Rafferty and the move paid dividends.

On 34 minutes Haslam took the ball off the defender and outpaced him down the line. He delivered a cross to the far post for Rick to take a touch and then smash past Chester to open the scoring.

However, the lead was short-lived. Two minutes later, after a sliced clearance from Darren Bettison, the ball fell kindly to Darren Fell who looked up and lifted the ball over the advancing Dale Sheppard to bring the scores level.

AFC regained the lead a minute before half-time. Initially a Danny Tighe corner was knocked back to him by Jonny Lugton.

On his second attempt Tighe produced a peach of a curling cross which Naylor met with a bullet header that left Chester waving at fresh air as it hit the back of the net.

At the beginning of the second half Sheppard had to make an important save down low to deny Fell an equalising goal.

The combination of Rick and Haslam was starting to tell on the home side and on 54 minutes the pair carved out a chance for James McCann who headed wide from six yards.

Rick turned provider on 62 minutes, racing down the right and pulling the ball back for Haslam to drive the ball home from just inside the box.

The final goal came on 73 minutes with Rick latching onto a Bettison through ball to fire past Chester from 12 yards.

AFC Mansfield are now starting to hit form and will be hoping to continue the winning ways when they travel to bottom club Welbeck Welfare on Saturday.

THORNE COLLIERY: Chester, G. Rafferty. Lugton (Stoddart 76), L. Rafferty, Rodgers, Hindson (Ebbage 65), Thomas, N. Sheppard, Fell, Rhodes, Atkinson (Hookway 76). Subs not used: Sneap, Frost.

AFC MANSFIELD: D. Sheppard, McGurk, Tighe, Draper, Holmes, Bettison, Haslam, Naylor J, Rick, Wiltshire (Cantrell 66), McCann (Meehan 62). Subs not used: Timons, Wilson, Fletcher.

REFEREE: Simon Swain

ATTENDANCE: 65.

AFC MAN OF THE MATCH: Dean Rick.

Elsewhere, Clay Cross beat Welbeck 5-1, Ollerton Town were pipped 2-1 at home by Brodsworth, Sherwood and Easington United drew 1-1 and Westella Hanson saw off Glapwell 3-0.

In the South Division, Blidworth were 2-0 winners at Belper United while Southwell City were held 1-1 at home by Linby.