Boss Mitch so proud as promoted Harborough Town deliver on the big day

The big occasion got the big crowd it deserved and Harborough Town duly delivered.

By Jon Dunham
Wednesday, 30th March 2022, 6:54 am
Updated Wednesday, 30th March 2022, 6:56 am
Rhys Hoenes opened the scoring with his effort as Harborough Town beat Hinckley Leicester Road 2-0 to secure promotion to Step 4 for the first time in their history. Picture by Andrew Carpenter

If anyone needed any evidence of just how far the Bees have come, the attendance of 721 for the top-of-the-table showdown with Hinckley Leicester Road on Saturday summed it up.

It was only 12 years ago that the club were winning the Northants Combination Premier Division title.

Now Harborough are looking forward to play at Step 4 - most likely in the Northern Premier League Midlands - next season.

A 2-0 victory, which avenged an earlier defeat to their title rivals, saw Mitch Austin’s team move six points clear at the top of the Uhlsport United Counties League Premier Division South.

They have played one game more than Leicester Road but are now in pole position to go on and clinch the title for good measure.

On the pitch, the Bees took the lead after 26 minutes when Rhys Hoenes slotted home.

And the crucial victory was completed just before the hour mark when James Ireland scored with a low drive.

Scenes of celebration followed as the first objective of a top-two finish and promotion was confirmed.

And boss Austin said: “It was brilliant. There is a real sense of pride.

“We’ve all had the chance to sleep on it and looking back at the game, I thought we performed really, really well.

“It was up there in our top five performances of the season.

“We had to be that good because we were playing against a top side so to get the result was fantastic and it gives us that gap.

“Hopefully we capitilise on that and go and win the title.”

Harborough will hope to edge closer to the crown when they head to Coventry United this weekend.