Winterton Rangers 1, Thackley 2

Thackley encountered tough opponents in third-bottom Winterton Rangers but a narrow victory lifted Lee Clapham’s men one place to fourth in the Toolstation Northern Counties East League Premier Division.

The Dennyboys are still in the hunt for promotion to the Evo-Stik League but Saturday’s victory was a rare one in recent weeks. They had taken just four points from the previous 18 on offer.

The visitors started brightly at Winterton but it took them until the 37th minute to break them down. Nicky Matthews ran onto an intelligent through-ball and netted with a good finish after rounding two defenders.

Thackley dominated possession in the second half but struggled to find the final ball to open up Rangers’ back four.

They did double their lead midway through the second period, Mike Garrod netting a downward header to convert Matt Morgan’s cross.

But Winterton ensured there was a nervy ending when Danny Hagan fired a shot past Dennyboys goalkeeper Ben Higginson with nine minutes plus stoppage time remaining.

Thackley spokesman Mick Lodge said: “It was a welcome three points but we had to battle to get them.

“Winterton are revitalised. They have a lot of new players and are a hungry young side.

“We won but Matt Mathers and James Firth had to be outstanding at the back. They had really good games.

“The second half was all us until they scored. We just had to tough it out and get the result after that.”