At the time the fixture list threw up four difficult away games in succession, Heanor Town’s form and league position was such that a couple of draws would not have been a disaster.
Then the Lions hit a spell of indifferent form and the whole complex changed. They had to go into these four games knowing that any dropped points would have a significant bearing on their title chances.
Three-quarters of the way through this spell and a 100 per cent return shows how quickly the team have regained the form which made them the most feared outfit in the league.
To complete this quartet of games on Saturday at Blackwell Miners Welfare (3pm) will be a wonderful achievement for both the team and its management, and with the chasing pack already working hard to keep up with the Lions, both Oadby and Borrowash will have to sweat it out longer if Heanor can return from Primrose Hill with another three points.
Joint manager Glenn Kirkwood praised the “Barmy Army” of loyal supporters who back the team to the hilt and make themselves heard at every game.
“I wonder if these supporters realise how much effect their tremendous support has on the players. They turn every away game into a home game for us and the players all say that it helps them through difficult periods of matches. Our supporters lift the players so much that they respond to the call. The players work their socks off for this club, this team, and our brilliant supporters.”
With Borrowash and Oadby still to play each other, and the Vics booked in at the Town Ground for what will hopefully be an Easter Monday thriller, maximum points from Blackwell on Saturday could well be the turning point of the title race for, of Heanor’s last six games, four will be at home and the final game away to an Ellistown side who now, after being docked four points for playing ineligible players, look almost certain to finish in bottom spot.
The Heanor management are able to pick from a full strength squad for Saturday’s vital game with no injuries other than those already out. As previously reported, Carl Slater’s season has been prematurely ended.
It was good to see Graham Wells back in action at Holbrook last Saturday and his well taken goal was a tonic for everyone. But it is the scoring ability of Nathan Benger which is hitting the headlines.
Benger’s brace at Holbrook took his tally to seven in the last three games and he currently leads the League’s goalscorers with 30 in the East Midlands Counties League alone. Nathan’s overall total for the season is 38 goals in 36 games, a phenomenal scoring record in any class of football. Overall he has netted 68 goals in 71 games for the club.