New Years Day, but not feeling too bad, I was a little too Captain Sensible last night. I was looking forward to this one, there is no love lost between these two Nationwide North local rivals. Met Neecey in the pleasant Byron Suite, where he'd already lined the drinks up, our 4 young sons have travelled today.
We opted to stand in the covered terrace behind the goal which Alfreton attacked first half. Their fans were mainly of good humour, bar the moron next to me, who managed to berate, moan, contest and swear at every decision the referee made. He also found it amusing to racially abuse goalkeeper Beattie and defender Legge. Shame on you!!
Alfreton were much improved from my last viewing, when they were extremely fortunate to grab a point versus Kettering a few months ago. Tiday was unsettling the home defence, and went close early on. Burbeary forced Hucknall defender Tom Cowan to clear from under his bar as Alfreton took advantage of the windy conditions. It was 0-0 at the break and Hucknall offered little, with Alfreton's Winder and Hannigan marshalling the Hucknall forward line.
The second half began under atrocious weather conditions, but Alfreton continued their confident start, and it was no surprise when they took the lead in the 56th minute through Nathan Winder, following hesitation in the Hucknall defence.
Mark Rawle, the powerful ex Southend striker doubled their lead on 65 minutes, after once again Hucknall had failed to clear their lines. Only two great saves by Hucknall keeper Beattie kept the score to two. Late in the game substitute Akers squandered a good chance of a consolation goal.
On this showing expect Alfreton to climb the table, strong in defence, incisive in the middle with good movement in forward areas they played with balance and style. Hucknall on the other hand Ricketts apart, are not the biggest side, and look lightweight. Maybe they have a few injuries but they are narrow and lack pace.
Man of the Match: Alfreton 7 Danny Mayman