QUORN 0 HOLBEACH UNITED 2 (Tidswell 32, Mulready 45): HOLBEACH impressively enhanced their UCL Premier Division title credentials with an eye-catching win in Leicestershire on Saturday.
First-half goals from Andrew Tidswell and leading scorer Sam Mulready were enough to earn the Tigers a sixth win from as many games – preserving their status as the league’s only flawless side in the process.
Beating a side expected to challenge for the title has left Holbeach chief John Chand sure that his team are right in the mix for silverware.
And he paid tribute to his charges for a job well done.
Chand said: “We were very disciplined and coped with their physical threat really well. Not a lot of teams will go there and get a win – you can be sure of that.
“The first half was superb and we got the goals when we were on top. It was tougher after the break, but we were able to call on some high quality subs and it really helped.
“This league is going to be very close this year and I’m sure it’s going to come down to results against teams in the top six.
“You look at Spalding, St Ives, Deeping, Quorn and Newport Pagnell as teams with realistic title ambitions.
“So far we’ve won at Deeping and Quorn, so we’re doing well in the mini-league.”
Holbeach handed a debut to keeper Michael Emery, who was signed on Friday after regular number one Lee Overton picked up a nasty hamstring injury.
Speculation had linked the Tigers with a loan move for King’s Lynn stopper Alex Street, but the transfer stalled after encouraging initial talks and he’s now joined Wisbech Town.
All the action was at the other end early on though, as Holbeach had an early penalty appeal turned down when Adam Jackson looked to be bundled over.
Tidswell then fired an effort off the post, before Mitch Griffiths saw a shot tipped wide.
Emery was forced to deny dangerous duo Luke Edwards and Tyrone Kirk, before the visitors finally broke the deadlock on the half hour.
Craig Parker’s initial shot was parried by keeper Ross Whalin, but the ever-alert Tidswell followed up to score.
It got even better for Chand’s charges on the brink of half-time, with Mulready rising to nod home Tidswell’s cracking free kick.
Straight after the interval Quorn come close to opening their account when Kris Nurse’s header smacked the crossbar.
Parker did go close to extending the away advantage on the hour, but it was a rare foray forward for his side.
The last ten minutes saw Holbeach under intense pressure, but the best Quorn could muster were wayward attempts from Nurse and Edwards and a header from Dan Marshall.
The impressive three-point haul keeps the Tigers second in the standings – but they’re just two points behind much-fancied St Ives with two games in hand.
Tigers: Emery, Allen, Jackson, Smith, Stevens, Griffiths, Stupple, Toyne (Warfield 73), Parker (Flack 82), Tidswell (Treacher 78), Mulready. Not used: Brown.
• Saturday: Tigers v Irchester Utd (3pm).