Gareth Ainsworth scored twice in a 3-0 victory for a Lincoln City XI against Greenbank FC in a charity match held at Sincil Bank last night. The event raised over £700 for Prostate Cancer UK.
Ainsworth lined up alongside former Imps players Simon Yeo and John Schofield , current staff Grant Brown and David Preece, local celebrities John Marshall and Rob Hammond from Lincs FM and a couple of lucky competition winners.
Ainsworth and Yeo were immediately involved for Lincoln, the latter winning an early corner from which Brown had a close range half volley blocked in the six yard box. Meanwhile at the other end, Imps’ current goalkeeping coach (and managerial candidate) David Preece was tested twice from long range.
Lincoln should’ve taken the lead moments later as Yeo rounded the Greenbank goalkeeper and clipped the ball towards an empty net, only for the onrushing Schofield to somehow miss the ball completely with the goal at his mercy.
Ainsworth then began to pull the strings, forcing two good saves from the 'keeper, first with a firmly struck free kick and then a delicate chip from the edge of the box.
However, when the midfield maestro spotted him off his line five minutes into the second half, there was nothing he could do to keep out the current Wycombe Wanderers manager’s superbly executed second attempt as the ball sailed over his head and into the net from around 35 yards!
Four minutes later, Ainsworth demonstrated that he’s also still got plenty of pace as he showed the Greenbank defence a clean pair of heels and coolly slotted into the roof of the net for his and Lincoln’s second.
He could have had a hat trick in the final couple of minutes as he arrived late at the far post to meet a low cross but was denied by the keeper’s knee. However, from the resulting corner, Lincoln were able to add a third with a shot which crashed in off the underside of the crossbar.
After the match, Ainsworth said that the event had been a huge success: “It was a cold night, there was football on the TV but people still turned up and got behind a great cause and hopefully they got entertained as well.
“I thought it was very evenly matched first half but then (in the) second half, I thought the pros just turned it up a bit and I was glad to get on the score sheet but the main thing was raising money for Prostate Cancer and raising awareness and I think we’ve done that in bundles tonight.”Tweet