DEFENDING champions Bulwell got their campaign in the Notts Senior League off to a remarkable start in a match laced with nine goals and three sendings-off.
The Bulls ran out 6-3 winners over Bilborough Town at Greenwich Avenue, but had to play almost an hour of the Senior Division clash with only nine men.
All started brilliantly as prolific Bulls marksman Allan Jeffries opened the scoring after on 68 seconds.
It was then two when strike partner Scott Litchfield finished with aplomb.
Bulwell should have stretched their advantage but were caught with a sucker punch to see their lead halved before the game’s major talking point.
For on 31 minutes, the match was marred by a melee that resulted in referee Phil Towers brandishing three red cards — Jeffries and Jay Knight were given their marching orders for the Bulls and Lewis followed the same way for Bilborough.
The visitors then took advantage of their extra personnel to grab a leveller before half time and leave the champions having to take stock during the break.
They did just that and goals from Josh Niblett and Litchfield made it 4-2.
A bit of sloppy play gave Bilborough a lifeline as they netted their third, but the nine men were showing an excellent attitude and restored their two-goal advantage when Litchfield completed his hat-trick.
Ryan King then rounded off a superb man-of-the-match performance with a 50-yard run and finish to complete the scoring.
FOR THE FULL MATCH REPORT, SEE THIS WEEK’S DISPATCH