Rejuvenated Hucknall Town emerged with most credit after the first two big local derbies of the new, domestic football season.
The four top clubs in the Dispatch district are all playing in the same division -- the Central Midlands League’s South Division -- for what promises to be a thrilling campaign.
And Town struck the first blow with a resounding 5-1 victory away to newly-promoted Hucknall Rolls Leisure last Saturday, helped by two goals from freshly-signed striker Aaron Evans and one apiece from Elliott Pitt and Nick Morgan.
However, Rolls recovered quickly to win the next derby on Bank Holiday Monday, thumping Linby Colliery Welfare 3-0 after the visitors had defender Matt Peberday sent off. Jack Allen, Kane Matthews and Rory Smith bgagged The Rollers’ goals in a deserved victory.
That result halted the four-match unbeaten start to the season by Linby, who had recorded a fine 3-2 win over Swanwick Pentrich Road 48 hours earlier, thanks to strikes from Damian Mann, Matt Murphy and Aaron Ryan. Linby twice came from behind before Ryan fired a dramatic, late winner.
The previous week, Swanwick had stunned title favourites, Bulwell, with a 3-0 success. However, The Bulls have now won all three matches since, including a Bamk Holiday weekend double over Mickleover Royal British Legion (3-2) and Blidworth Welfare (3-1). Jay Knight was among the goals in both games.
Meanwhile Town followed up their triumph at Rolls with an agonising 2-2 draw on Bank Holiday Monday at home to leaders Belper United, who equalised in the dying seconds to prevent The Yellows going top of the table themselves.
The local-derby bandwagon rolls on this Saturday to Church Lane, Linby where the home side entertain Town (kick-off 3 pm).