SUPERSUB Jonny Bernard followed up a hat-trick for the reserves by repeating the dose for the first team as LINBY COLLIERY WELFARE tuned up in style for their big cup semi-final tomorrow (Saturday).
Bernard earned his first-team call-up after blasting four goals, including three penalties, in a midweek victory for the reserves.
And he took his chance with open arms as Linby hammered bottom-of-the-table Vernon Villa 8-1 in the Notts Senior League’s Senior Division.
They followed up by defeating Kimberley Miners Welfare 3-0 on Tuesday night and could hardly be in better heart for the league cup semi against Second Division leaders Burton Joyce.
The winners face one of the top flight’s top two teams, Bulwell or FC Cavaliers, who meet in the other tie.
Bernard was one of several reserve-team players drafted into Linby’s side last Saturday because of injuries and holidays. Others included defenders Tom Endy and Paul Prewett, who had outstanding games at left-back and centre-half respectively.
Vernon had held Hucknall Rolls Leisure to a 3-3 draw in their previous game. But they had picked up only four points all season and had leaked 139 goals, so it was little surprise to see Linby in control from the off.
After Simon Marlow had seen a header cleared off the line, Jonty Bradshaw crossed from the byline for man-of-the-match Matt Murphy to provide a sublime finish into the bottom corner.
Five minutes later, new striker Baz Payne thumped a classic centre-forward’s header into the roof of the net from Mann’s left-wing cross.
And then more excellent work by Payne enabled Bradshaw to knock an audacious chip into the far corner from 16 yards.
Vernon pulled a goal back a minute into the second half when Paul Harrison executed a fine volley against his former club.
But normal service was resumed when Mann fed Murphy for a one-on-one that he slid past the ‘keeper.
Bernard, who had gone on at the interval, netted his first goal in the 63rd minute when lobbing the goalie from Matt Peberday’s searching through-ball. And Vernon’s afternoon got even worse on 70 when defender Jefferson Hillaire was sent off for pushing Payne in the face.
Two minutes later, it was 6-1 as Mann crossed for Bernard to finish well. And then both Murphy and Bernard completed their trebles to round off the rout.
Murphy drifted inside his marker to hit a stunning 25-yarder off the bar for an awesome goal before turning provider to tee up Bernard, who scored from six yards.
n LINBY LINE-UP (4-4-2) — Miles/ Jago, Peberday, Prewett, Endy/ Bradshaw J., Ryan, Marlow S., Mann/ Murphy, Payne. Subs: Bernard J. (for Ryan 45), Porter (for Mann 75), Mee (for Bradshaw 78).
LINBY’S goals against Kimberley were scored by the prolific Murphy, who hit a brace, and Payne.
n LINBY LINE-UP (4-4-2) — Miles/ Marlow D., Jago, Prewett, Endy/ Bradshaw, Ryan, Winfield, Mann/ Murphy, Payne. Subs: Bernard (for Bradshaw 45), Dakers (for Mann 60), Peberday (for Marlow D. 62).