Worksop Town’s six-game unbeaten run came to a disappointing end with a 3-0 defeat at local NCEL Premier Division rivals Clipstone in the big Boxing Day derby.
To rub salt in the Tigers’ wounds, they also had Richard Adams sent off with four minutes to go for a high challenge.
The game attracted 262 spectators, Clipstone’s biggest crowd of the season.
Cobras supporters were given late Christmas presents in the form of two new signings - former Barnsley striker Nathan Joynes and midfielder Keir Hannity who has recently returned from four years in the USA at University where he also played for New Orleans Jesters.
Both players were involved in significant moments of the game that contributed to the Clipstone victory.
Clipstone spent much of the first 20 minutes mainly in their own half as the visitors started strongly.
They created the first real chance after nine minutes when Mitch Husbands forced a good low save from Jamie Bailey at his near post.
After a miskick by Worksop’s Aaron Pickersgill nearly presented Nathan Joynes with an early opportunity to grab his first goal for the Cobras, the visitors attacked down their left hand side and when Bailey’s initial save pushed the ball upwards in the six yard box, Chris Fawcus was on hand to head the ball out for a corner.
Clipstone then started to win the midfield battle with Hannity, Richard Patterson and Andrew Fox linking well while Joynes showed good ability to hold the ball up when required and bring team mates into the game.
On 28 minutes Joynes played George Milner in and the Cobras’ forward beat one man as he ran across the box looking to get his shot in. However, he was driven wide and, with less of the goal to aim for, his shot was blocked by a defender.
At the other end Worksop’s Adam Scott then had a 25-yard shot that had ‘goal’ written all over it until Bailey managed to get his fingertips to it and produce an excellent save to turn the ball over the bar.
Cobras’ skipper Richard Patterson forced a save from Jon Kennedy after neat interplay involving Joynes, Milner and Fox.
Patterson then opened the scoring after 36 minutes when he fired the ball past Kennedy after good build-up play by Hannity and Milner had found him in space in the box.
Defender Richard Haigh missed a golden opportunity to grab a second for Clipstone three minutes later when a ball by Nathan Forbes found Hannity, who crossed to Haigh but Kennedy saved with his knee.
The last significant action of the first half saw Forbes force another save from Kennedy with a strike from the edge of the box as the home side finished the half strongly.
Both sides had good chances in the second period but two goals in the last 11 minutes eventually secured all three points for the Cobras.
Adam Scott looked the most likely Worksop player to score, and he found the sidenetting after 47 minutes as the visitors capitalised on a weak Joe Austin back pass.
Bailey then did well to deny Scott at his near post a few minutes later.
Joynes showed his quality when he turned his marker and played the ball inside for Milner, whose shot was just wide of the far post.
With 65 minutes gone Worksop captain Kyle Jordan had an excellent chance to level when a cross from the left found him unmarked in the area, but his shot was well over Bailey’s crossbar.
The visitors continued to press for an equaliser and a shot by Jack Waddle from the edge of the area forced a good low save from Bailey as he pushed the ball round the post.
The Cobras’ keeper was again in action as he punched the resulting corner clear.
Billy Fox made his first two substitutions as Steve McDonnell and Jordan Joynson replaced Forbes and Austin respectively.
Milner then had another good chance for the Cobras after turning his defender but his shot was well wide.
The much-needed second goal eventually came on 79 minutes when Joynes won back possession and put McDonnell away down the left. The latter then pulled the ball back to the edge of the area and Andrew Fox’s well-placed shot found the corner of the goal.
McDonnell grabbed a third for Clipstone five minutes later when Joynes again found him with a neat flick-on. The substitute still had plenty of work to do as he checked back in the area to wrongfoot his marker and beat Kennedy with a powerful drive.
Adams’ late dismissal completed an afternoon of misery for the Tigers.