ATHERTON Collieries edged out a tight home contest against Grantham Town, thanks to a second half-winner from Danny Lambert on his 100th Colls appearance.

It was a game of few clear-cut chances, with neither side able to break the deadlock in a cagey first half that came before Lambo’s match winning strike.

The first opportunity of the afternoon fell to the visitors, Danny Taberner on his toes to punch away a close-range header in the opening exchanges.

Colls’ first sight of goal came through Marcus Cusani, the winger beating a couple of defenders before firing a tame effort straight at the goalkeeper.

Jack Lenehan had a good chance from a free-kick on the edge of the area on half an hour, but his effort clipped the Gingerbreads wall and Matty Gillam couldn’t convert the rebound.

It was Grantham’s turn to have a go from a set-piece a few minutes later, forcing Danny Taberner to make a low save at his far post.

Both slides saw penalty shouts turned down before the break, Matty Gillam going down under challenge in the box and Town shouting for handball, both dismissed by the ref.

After a tentative opening, the game came to life in the second half – with Colls striking first blood a few moments after the restart.

Matty Gillam’s blocked effort fell to Danny Lambert in the box and the midfielder rifled the ball into the roof of the net – a fairytale moment on his 100th appearance in black and white.

From there the home side looked to double their advantage, Marcus Cusani and Gaz Peet both seeing efforts blocked by the Grantham defence.

A marauding run into the box from skipper Gaz Peet saw him reach the byline and put a teasing ball across the six-yard box, but no one was on-hand to convert.

Having scored a goal, Danny Lambert’s milestone appearance wouldn’t have been complete without a crunching tackle – this one saw him go into the book in the 87th minute.

Grantham rallied late on and put the home side under pressure, the Colls defence withstanding a barrage of long throws and crosses into the box, to no avail for the visitors.

The welcome final whistle sealed a hard-earned three points for Brad Cooke’s men who have made a strong start to the season – with four wins in seven games.

On Saturday Colls host Witton Albion in thev2nc qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup. Ko 3pm.