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Bourne Town are in action at the JJ Mac Stadium when they host West Bridgford on Saturday

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Manager Steve Wilson feels his Bourne Town side are going in the right direction ahead of a home double-header for the Wakes.

Bourne host West Bridgford at the JJ Mac Stadium on Saturday before entertaining Gedling Miners Welfare on Tuesday night in Division One of the United Counties League.

The Wakes go into the contest having netted their first win of the season on Saturday when they defeated Ingles 3-2.

Bourne boss Steve Wilson. (51534947)
Bourne boss Steve Wilson. (51534947)

They then went down to a 2-0 away defeat at third-placed Birstall United on Tuesday evening but Wilson feels his team are starting to close the gap on the leading lights having already faced five of the current top eight teams this season.

He said: "Birstall were a little bit better than us on the night but not massively.

"We have lost games recently where there has been a gulf between the sides, but there wasn't on Tuesday night which shows that we are closing the gap.

"They probably had two or three more experienced players than us who managed the game better which was possibly the biggest difference.

"I've had time to reflect on the game and I am more happier now than I was on the night.

"We had a one-on-one well saved and also had a good shout for a penalty and, if those had gone our way, it might have been a different game.

"Those small margins make a difference to a game, but we're getting better and going in the right direction.

"Some of the teams did look a lot better than us earlier in the season, but I dare say that wouldn't be the case if we played them now.

"We are more competitive all over the pitch. We know we're not the finished article yet but hopefully we can now start kicking on."

It was new signing Josh Hales - who has joined on dual registration from Northern Premier League Midlands Division side Yaxley - who went closest to breaking the deadlock in the first period only to be denied by a fine save from the Birstall goalkeeper.

The hosts then hit the front midway through the second half when Sean Phillips' fine cross was converted by Paul Pallett.

The Wakes then had Corey Newman red-carded following an altercation on the halfway line before Birstall wrapped up the win with seven minutes remaining as Dion Potter picked out Dre Articolo who fired home the clinching goal.

Corey Newman (left) was sent off against Birstall. (51534949)
Corey Newman (left) was sent off against Birstall. (51534949)

Bourne had gone into the midweek match buoyed by their first league win of the season on Saturday as they hit visiting Ingles with a quick-fire three-goal blast in the second half.

They had handed a debut to new signing Tom Palmer as the former Deeping Rangers defender was joined by the returning Jake Mason as well as Jacob Fenton in a strong Wakes line-up.

They fell behind just before the half-hour mark when Callum Hardy's fine pass found Billy Clarke who beat John Swales in the home goal.

Zak Yusef had a good chance to double the lead for the visitors early in the second half but shot wide when well-placed.

And Bourne made their visitors pay with a quick-fire three goal blast in 18 minutes after a dominant second half display that put them in control of the contest.

Harry Fitzjohn brought the Wakes level after 64 minutes before Mason marked his comeback by tapping home the second goal eight minutes later.

Substitute Aaron Warrener then added the third after 82 minutes before Ingles quickly reduced the deficit as a shot from Ryan Hardy was saved by Swales but rebounded off a defender and into the Bourne net.

Wilson added: "It was a very good win for us. We were really dominant in the second half which was very pleasing.

"The lads deserved the win and got a lot of credit for it and rightly so.

"The team looks a lot stronger now. It's stronger on paper and when you're watching it and it's now starting to show.

"I'm pleased to have brought Tom in because he's a player who I rate. He made us look more solid and he's very competitive.

"Hopefully we can get some good availability over the next few games and go on a little bit of a run which would be nice."

New signing Hales is set to remain with the Wakes for the next few games but Palmer misses Saturday's match with West Bridgford.

Fenton - who is dual registered with Sheffield FC - is likely to be with the Northern Premier League East Division side this weekend.

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