The first local derby for many years between Pinxton and Selston ended in a Boxing Day knockout and a 5-0 victory for the title-chasing away team.
Having plied their trade in different leagues for at least a decade, the two rivals finally collided in an eagerly-awaited Central Midlands League, South Division clash.
But while Pinxton deserved a lot of credit for getting the match on after heavy rain had saturated their pitch, Selston claimed all the bragging rights after a convincing performance that lifted them to within four points of leaders Belper United with two games in hand. Now their trip to Belper on Wednesday, January 6 looks like a match not to be missed.
In a barnstorming start to the derby, Pinxton almost snatched the lead when Chris Gilson’s shot from 22 yards rattled the underside of the bar and the ball bounced to safety.
But from then on, Selston took command and bagged their opening goal in the 15th minute when midfielder Sean Gregory’s shot was half-blocked and Carl Moore reacted first to square the loose ball to Wayne Cooke, who stabbed home from close range.
It was 2-0 just four minutes later as skipper Ben Moore fed a free-kick to Joe Riley, whose shot from 20 yards took a deflection and nestled in the bottom corner of the net.
Although Selston continued to attack, with Tom Widdowson and skipper Gregory prominent, Pinxton refused to buckle and created another opening for Gilson, whose drive was well saved by ‘keeper Jake Ball. Moments later, the ball struck the visitors’ bar again, after a goalmouth scramble, and had to be scrambled away by Jamie Renshaw.
However, any hope that the hosts had of launching a fightback were all but buried by a third Selston goal just before the interval. This time, Gregory broke free in the inside-right channel and was unceremoniously upended by Lee Farnsworth as he cut across the edge of the box for a free-kick that Moore stepped up to curl home.
Refusing to take their foot off the gas, the visitors added a fourth goal four minutes into the second half. Moore released Cooke, who beat the offside trap before unselfishly squaring the ball for strike partner Moore to net his second of the game.
By now, Pinxton were broken and had to withstand wave after wave of Selston attacks, with Cooke dancing through three challenges before firing over the top and Riley forcing a fine save from ‘keeper Gareth Briggs.
The home side did respond with a couple of efforts that brought stops from Ball. But Selston were attacking at will and they completed their rout 14 minutes from the end. Rory Davies, filling in admirably at centre-half, calmly won the ball and dinked a terrific pass into the channel for substitute Dominic Airey, who turned his marker inside out before finishing emphatically at the near post.
The win was the 11th from 14 league fixtures this season for Selston, who entertain Hucknall Rolls Leisure in their next match this Saturday. Pinxton, who now sit eighth in the table, ten points behind their rivals, are also in action Saturday, away to second-placed Hucknall Town.