By Tom Belger
OLD Boltonians underlined their Premier Division title credentials with a resounding 5-0 victory away to main title rivals Prestwich 5-0.
Julian Stevens’ men earned a measure of revenge on the Heys Road side who pipped Old Bolts to last year’s title by a point.
Manager Stevens was full of praise for his side, in particular strikers Dean Halewood and Matt McClellan who rekindled a childhood partnership to tear apart the Prestwich defence.
“They’ve not played together for about 10 years since they were at Bolton County schoolboys, but they clicked straightaway and caused so many problems for their defence,” Stevens said.
McClellan gave Old Bolts the lead midway through the first half before new signing Halewood doubled the lead after half an hour.
The Turton men continued the onslaught after the break as McClellan scored his second before a well struck free kick by Darren Dalton and a goal by Sean Rushton topped off a resounding victory.
Stevens feared his team might be rusty having not played in the league for more than two months, but was delighted by his side’s performance against a physical Prestwich side.
“We were ice cool on the ball and didn’t get dragged into a fight with them,” he said. “They did exactly what I wanted them to do and I can’t fault any of them.
Second-placed Castle Hill overcame Bury GSBO 3-1 in what manager Rob Rostron described as a “feisty affair”.
Goals from Rob Walsh and Chris Beresford gave Castle Hill a 2-0 half-time lead which became three soon after the break with a Walsh penalty.
Bury GSBO managed to pull one back but Rostron’s side held on thanks to a fantastic performance by right-back Taylor Gildea who took the man-of-the-match award.
“It was a fiercely competitive game and it was all one-way traffic in the first half but it was a very feisty game overall,” said Rostron.
Fourth-placed Little Lever extended their winning run to five games with a hard-fought victory over Old Mancunians.
Lee Buckley’s side came from a goal down to take the points with strikes from Scott Bingham and Ashley Williams either side of half time.
“It was a real battling and fighting team performance, so it was great to come out on top,” Buckley said.