Awsworth Villa show Dunkirk spirit to boost their title hopes

HEAD BOY -- Josh Niblett, who rose highest to nod Awsworth in front en route to a vital victory over Dunkirk AFC in the Notts Senior League.
HEAD BOY -- Josh Niblett, who rose highest to nod Awsworth in front en route to a vital victory over Dunkirk AFC in the Notts Senior League.

The quest for the Notts Senior League, Senior Division title by Awsworth Villa received a boost when they ground down the plucky youngsters of Dunkirk AFC on a heavy pitch at The Shilo.

Awsworth beat their mid-table visitors 3-1 to move up to third in the table. And although they remain 13 points adrift of leaders West Bridgford, they ndo have three games in hand.

Full of energy, Dunkirk started brightest and were almost gifted the lead when a backpass deceived home ‘keeper Matt Walsh but trickled wide. And even though Villa broke the deadlock when Josh Niblett rose highest to meet a Shaw Hutchinson corner and head home at the back post, the visitors were soon level with their own header from a flagkick, scored by Joel Howes.

In the second half, Matt Goodwin’s shot cannoned off a post and then Hutchinsson’s half-volley rattled the bar before Villa finally edged ahead again in the 70th minute, courtesy of Ryan Whitehurst, who found half a yard in the box to fire into the roof of the net.

Goodwin was again denied by a post before the points were sealed late on when a fantastic cross by one substitute, Anthony Withe, was headed home in fine style by another sub, Kurt Savage, with almost his first touch.