VERDICT – One more effort will finish the job for super Steelmen

Steven Leslie takes the congratulations after scoring his second and Corby Town's third goal in the 3-0 win over Grantham Town. Pictures by Alison Bagley
Steven Leslie takes the congratulations after scoring his second and Corby Town's third goal in the 3-0 win over Grantham Town. Pictures by Alison Bagley

One more big effort will complete Corby Town’s great escape from relegation from the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Premier Division.

Two years ago on the final day of the season, the Steelmen headed to Poole Town needing to win to clinch the Southern League Premier Division title which they famously did.

Steven Leslie sends Keiran Preston the wrong way from the penalty spot for Corby's second goal

Steven Leslie sends Keiran Preston the wrong way from the penalty spot for Corby's second goal

But, 24 months down the line, they will now travel to Coalville Town on the last day of this campaign looking to save themselves from a second successive relegation.

And, if they carry on from what they have done over this Easter weekend, the job will surely be finished off.

There was more than a hint of irony as Corby produced a terrific display to see off play-off contenders Grantham Town 3-0 in front of the biggest crowd of the season at Steel Park.

Cast your minds back to Boxing Day. The Steelmen were hammered 4-0 at Grantham with the defeat leaving them 12 points adrift of safety and bottom of the pile.

The Corby players enjoy that winning feeling after the final whistle

The Corby players enjoy that winning feeling after the final whistle

But the turnaround started by Gary Mills now looks like it will be finished off by Steve Kinniburgh, who seems to have galvanised the players for the final push.

Coming into the bank holiday clash off the back of a crucial 1-0 success at Stafford Rangers on Saturday, the Steelmen knew a win would, at the very least, keep things in their own hands going into the final weekend. And they made no mistake.

From the first minute, Corby looked sharper. They gave their high-flying visitors little time to settle and the fact Aidan Grant had to make just two routine saves tells you everything you need to know about the defensive performance they turned in.

But they were also a big threat at the other end and once giant defender Aaron Brown had headed them in front from a David Bell corner on 20 minutes, they always looked favourites to go on and claim victory.

Steven Leslie, who has been highly impressive over this weekend, almost doubled the lead when he spotted Keiran Preston off his line and took aim from fully 40 yards but saw his effort drop just over the crossbar.

Grantham did start the second half with a bit more purpose and substitute Felipe Barcelos had a shot blocked from a good position before Harry Clifton blazed over the crossbar.

But, aside from Grant helping a Danny Meadows shot over, that was as close as the visitors came and Corby gave themselves some breathing space just past the hour.

Former Steelmen defender Stefan Galinski climbed all over Brown at a set-piece and referee Hallam Cutmore pointed to the spot.

While the Corby faithful held their breath, Leslie looked like the coolest person in the building as he calmly sent Preston the wrong way and rolled home his spot-kick.

And the game was up with 19 minutes to go when Leslie’s free-kick from the right touchline found its way into the far corner without anyone else getting a touch.

The tireless Joe Iaciofano lobbed a late effort just over the bar but Corby managed the game well and saw it out to secure what was, a somewhat surprisingly comfortable success.

The Easter weekend has produced six points, two clean sheets and a massive opportunity to complete this great escape at the weekend.

And in this sort of mood, you’d expect the job to be finished off. See you all in Coalville!

Steelmen: Grant; Smith, Brown, Lee (sub Anton, 77 mins), C Wildin; Crawford (sub Kennedy, 74 mins), D Bell, Milnes, Leslie; Iaciofano (sub R Bell, 87 mins), Trainer. Subs not used: Weir-Daley, Draper.

Grantham: Preston; L Wildin, Purcicoe (sub Burrows, 61 mins), Galinski, Storey; Meadows, Clifton, Hollingsworth (sub Lewis, 61 mins), Luke Shaw; Dassaolu (sub Barcelos, 49 mins), Lee Shaw. Subs: Curtis, Gibbons.

Referee: Hallam Cutmore.

Goals: Brown (20 mins, 1-0), Leslie pen (59 mins, 2-0), Leslie (71 mins, 3-0).

Bookings: Galinski, Smith (both fouls).

Attendance: 785.