Uhlsport Hellenic League Division 1 West

Thornbury Town 3 Clanfield 85 2

Despite the absence of leading scorer Craig Lancastle, Thornbury Town secured their first win of the season on Saturday with a battling performance against visitors Clanfield.

However it was Clanfield who took a first minute lead when they attacked straight from the kick-off and a misunderstanding at the heart of the Thorns defence allowed Kevin Davies to slot the ball past Kurtis Parkin.

They almost doubled their lead a minute later but Isaac Oliver miscued his shot at the far post. Town gradually clawed their way back into the game and Marcus Wormwell’s effort from just inside the penalty area went narrowly wide.

After 15 minutes, Brandon Benjamin appeared to be brought down by Clanfield keeper Zoldan but the referee waved away appeals for a penalty.

Minutes later the same two were in action again with Zoldan saving at Benjamin’s feet as he latched on to Jim Brock’s cross.

The visitors looked dangerous on the break but the closest they came to extending their lead was Robinson’s free kick which he curled into the side netting.

First half stoppage time saw both sides reduced to 10 men when a clash between Marcus Wormwell and Clanfield’s Kevin Davies gave the referee no option but to show both players a straight red card.

Thorns made the perfect start to the second half when after just three minutes, Luke Franklin made a strong run into the Clanfield area and when he saw his shot cannon back off the post, Harry Brock arrived to dispatch the rebound past Zoldan to equalise.

Things got even better 10 minutes later when a patient Town build-up saw Franklin backheel the ball to Jim Brock in the penalty area and he slotted the ball into the net to make it 2-1.

Thorns didn’t have long to wait to extend their lead further when Harry Brock was brought down in the area and Luke Franklin made no mistake from the penalty spot.

With the game won, Town conceded a sloppy goal in stoppage time with the visitors Joe Hiscock allowed time and space to lob the ball over Kurtis Parkin’s head and although Ollie Rawnsley cleared off the line Hiscock followed up to net a consolation for Clanfield.

A welcome win for Town and they will look to build on this performance on Saturday when they make the first ever appearance in the FA Vase, which, if they make good progress, can lead to national exposure and boost the club's coffers. However they face a tricky tie against league rivals Cheltenham Saracens who finished one place and one point ahead of Thorns last season. Kick off at the Mundys is 3pm.