Bannsiders return to 5 point lead with big win over Ards

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Coleraine's Gareth McConaghie scored a brace against Ards. Image credit: NIFL

Q Radio Sport

Title contenders Coleraine and Crusaders warmed up for their showdown at the Showgrounds this Saturday with impressive Danske Bank Premiership victories on Tuesday night. 

The Bannsiders bounced back from Saturday's defeat at Linfield and restored their five-point lead at the top with a 4-1 home win against Ards.

Defender Gareth McConaghie scored twice in the first half and the victory was completed by second-half goals from Josh Carson and former Kilmarnock midfielder Martin Smith, his first for the league leaders.

Meanwhile, Stephen Baxter's men cruised to a 4-0 success at Dungannon and moved to within a point of second-placed Glenavon.


After a hat-trick on Saturday, Crues winger Gavin Whyte helped himself to a double at Stangmore Park.

Rodney Brown had headed the Crues into the lead with David Cushley the other scorer, grabbing the goal of the game in stoppage time.

The Shore Road side have now won nine games in a row in all competitions, five in the league. 

Swifts boss Rodney McAree was impressed.

The weekend Premiership programme kicks off on Friday night with Glenavon at home to Linfield before five fixtures on Saturday, including that Coleraine-Crues clash. 

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