Bond strikes for Colne to end Saints’ long unbeaten run

Nathan Bond scored Colne's winner on Saturday
Nathan Bond scored Colne's winner on Saturday
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Nathan Bond proved the match winner again, sending the travelling Red army home in good spirits after ending St Helens’ unbeaten 13 game league run at Brocstedes Park.

Colne started with all guns blazing. After only four minutes they took the lead when a left wing move saw a clever back flick by Jason Hart release Bond, and he confidently finished into the bottom corner.

A minute later another good attack down the left saw Paddy O’Brian’s low cross desperately cleared by the Saints defence.

The Saints’ first meaningful attack produced a great save by Chris Thompson, denying Adam Storey with his fingertips.

The game developed into a midfield stalemate, with the Reds still in the ascendency, but on the half hour they had to thank Johnny Hodgkinson for a brilliant tackle to snuff out a rare Saints attack.

The next action on 34 minutes saw Hart’s 30-yard free kick tipped over.

Two minutes later, after a period of pinball in the area, Daniel Owens drove the ball just over the bar.

The final attack of the half saw Jimmy Crorken release Hart down the left wing, and he cleverly stepped inside the full back only for his shot to clear the cross bar by inches.

Colne started the second half as they began the first, on the front foot, and a right wing move between Ted Cockett and Hart saw an inviting cross headed over by Crorken.

Minutes later, after full back Alex Grice had found Hart in space, his ball through to Bond was just too strong and the defence cleared.

The last 25 minutes proved to be all Saints, as they turned to long balls, testing the central defence of Johnny Hodgkinson and Nathan Gibson.

The duo proved more than able, with Hodgkinson bravely playing the last 15 minutes slightly dazed after an accidental kick to the face.

With a minute remaining, substitute Lee Barrett interchanged passes in the area, only for his shot to hit the side netting with the keeper beaten.

The Saints did have a goal disallowed in injury time when a deep free kick saw Thompson fouled before the ball was bundled home.

All in all, it was a deserved victory.

Man of the match was Hodginkson with another outstanding performance.

Colne are next in action at the XLCR Stadium tomorrow when they host Squires Gate, kick-off 3 p.m.