APRIL AND PLAY-OFFS MANAGER AND PLAYER AWARDS
Tuesday May 22, 2012
Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox has been named the Blue Square Bet Premier ‘manager of the month' for April and the Play-Offs.
Cox took his side into a two-legged play-off semi-final with York City off the back of five straight wins in the division during April. A 2-0 home win over runners-up Wrexham was followed by a victory at Kidderminster Harriers on the final day of the season. The Stags secured third place in the table and were cast as favourites to win the end of season shoot-out.
A draw at York in the 1st leg set up a tense second game where an extra-time goal from Matty Blair was the difference between the two sides. Despite the disappointment Cox signed a new two-year deal to remain at Field Mill and challenge for promotion in 2012/13. Mansfield have been installed as the 11/2 second favourites to win the title by Blue Square for next season.
In the Blue Square Bet North the ‘manager of the month' award for April and the Play-Offs goes to Nuneaton Town manager Kevin Wilkin. Eight unbeaten games including a Promotion Final success away at Gainsborough Trinity secured a place in the Blue Square Bet Premier. Wilkin's side kept five clean sheets in the process and defeated runners-up Guiseley in a two-legged play-off semi-final before achieving the ultimate prize at Northolme.
The Blue Square Bet South ‘manager of the month' for April and the Play-Offs goes to Tony Burman from Dartford. Burman's side beat Kent rivals Welling United 1-0 in the Promotion Final to take their place in next season's Blue Square Bet Premier line-up. The Darts kept five clean sheets as they secured the runners-up berth in the South section. Winning all three play-off matches including home and away against in-form Basingstoke Town in the semi-final.
BLAIR FIRES MINSTERMEN TO UNIQUE DOUBLE TO LAND MONTHLY AWARD
Matty Blair from York City has been named the Blue Square Bet Premier ‘player of the month' for April and the Play-Offs. The winger has been on an incredible run of form that has seen him score at Wembley in two finals and an all-important extra-time goal at Mansfield Town in the play-off semi-final 2nd leg. Blair opened the scoring in the FA Trophy success over Newport County and scored the decisive goal in the Promotion Final against Luton Town. Blair also scored in City's 2-0 victory at Alfreton Town earlier in the month which set them on the way to securing the play-off place which ultimately ended in regaining their place back in the Football League.
In the Blue Square Bet North the ‘player of the month' for April and the Play-Offs is Dwight Gayle from Bishop's Stortford. Gayle has spent the season on loan at the Hertfordshire side after signing for Dagenham & Redbridge last summer. He ended the season with a hat-trick away at Stalybridge Celtic and repeated the feat in their final game of the season at home to Eastwood Town. The six goals during the period taking him to a record total for a season at the club as they allayed early relegation fears to finish in a respectable mid-table position.
The Blue Square Bet South ‘player of the month' for April and the Play-Offs is Giuseppe Sole from Woking. Sole takes consecutive awards in the division as he fired the Cards to the title. Six goals during the month in all of his club's matches took his run to 15 goals in eleven consecutive games for the champions. A double at in-form Basingstoke Town the highlight of the month. His club regaining their place in Non-League's top-flight after a three year exile.
2011/12 Season - April and the Play-Offs awards summary:
Blue Square Bet Premier PAUL COX from Mansfield Town
Blue Square Bet North KEVIN WILKIN from Nuneaton Town
Blue Square Bet South TONY BURMAN from Dartford
Blue Square Bet Premier MATTY BLAIR from York City
Blue Square Bet North DWIGHT GAYLE from Bishop's Stortford
Blue Square Bet South GIUSEPPE SOLE from Woking