Hinckley AFC 3-2 Bourne Town

Hinckley AFC extended their winning sequence to 13, but had to work hard to overcome a two goal deficit against a stubborn Bourne Town.

Two sensational early strikes gave the visitors a shock lead but three home goals turned the tide in AFC’s favour before the break.

And though they couldn’t add any further goals after the interval, Hinckley were never in danger of surrendering the points from that stage.

A home win seemed a distant prospect after the opening ten minutes and Bourne went on front inside two minutes. A corner was cleared to the edge of the box and Taylor Gray tried his luck successfully with a shot into the top corner.

And the home crowd were stunned into silence shortly after as Bourne extended their lead with a wonderful strike. Matt Hill came out of his area to stop an attack, but his clearance only found Dan Wilson 25 yards out on the left hand touchline and his precise shot sailed over the frantically back-pedalling keeper and dropped into the net.

Hinckley were in a hole, but two goals in as many minutes midway through the first half dug them out. Ryan Slinn scored the first with a neat finish from the right hand angle of the box after getting in behind the Bourne defence.

And the cheers had scarcely died down when Tyson Knight drew them level with a bullet header from Harry Sawyer’s right wing cross.

The turnaround was complete ten minutes before the break. Ryan Harkin timed his run to perfection to beat the offside trap in receiving Luke Wilson’s pass and producing a composed finish that’s become his trademark.

It was a breathless first half that gave way to a more subdued affair after the interval. AFC dominated possession but struggled to break down a solid rearguard action from a disciplined Bourne defence. Whilst Hinckley rarely looked like conceding, they couldn’t force another goal that would have given them a little more breathing space.

They did come close. Joe Cairns struck the base of a post and visiting keeper John Swales made a superb save at full stretch to keep out Lewis Rankin’s free kick.

But Bourne defended resolutely to keep themselves in the game, albeit they rarely looked like grabbing an equaliser.

It wasn’t a vintage Hinckley display, but the character they showed in coming from behind should stand them in good stead for what’s likely to be a nervy run-in to the end of the season.

Hinckley: Matt Hill, Harry Sawyer, Mikkel Hirst, Tyson Knight, Luke Wilson, Ben Vallance, Ryan Slinn (Lewis Rankin 62), Liam Cairns, Ryan Harkin (Charlie Evans 56), Jack Edwards, Joe Cairns (Jeremie Agholor 76). Subs not used: Nick Brandish, Ben Whitehead

Goals: Ryan Slinn (25), Tyson Knight (26), Ryan Harkin (34)

Bourne: John Swales, James Gorden, Dan Wilson, Taylor Gray, Tom Palmer, Herbie Panting, Jake van der Drift, Will Gore (Hans Stevens 62), Dan Miller (Nathan Bills 76), Harry Brooks, Thomas Klinkovic.

Goals: Taylor Gray (2), Dan Wilson (9)

Attendance: 228

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