Celtic record second-successive win

INSTALLED as relegation candidates, Paul Heaton’s newly-promoted Celtic are beginning to turn heads in the National Conference League’s second tier after a 28-16 win over Saddleworth.

Having demolished Stanley to clinch their first points of the season seven days prior, the Dewsbury outfit made a rip-roaring start to proceedings on Saturday.

The Crow Nest Park outfit led at the break and picked up from where they had left off afterwards to sink former Premier Division side Saddleworth on home soil, with man of the match half-back Niki Crabtree leading the way.

Crabtree added the extras to brother Danny’s fourth-minute opening score, firing the hosts into a 6-0 lead.

But visitors Saddleworth refused to lie down. Wingman Danny Bowker hit back, stand-off Michael Coates converting admirably from the touchline.

Now level, the Rangers appeared to grow in confidence and centre Mark Brocklehurst bagged their second score of the afternoon.

But Celtic were in no mood to simply give in, the hosts battling back to lead 16-10 at half time with tries coming courtesy of substitute Josh Thorneycroft and paceman Anthony Dunford. Nisi Crabtree added extras to the latter.

What followed after the resumption left the Rangers with a mountain to climb.

Pat Foulstone raced 60 metres to claim his sixth try of the season nine minutes into the second half, Nisi Crabtree improving from bang in front.

And Celtic put the encounter effectively beyond the away side just after the hour as Dewsbury Rams trialist Jason Muranka charged across the whitewash from close range. Crabtree’s fourth conversion from five made it 28-10.

James Whalley claimed a late consolation score for Saddleworth but his effort took little away from Celtic’s triumph, taking the Heavy Woollen club up to sixth on the league ladder with two wins from four.

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