Stevenage history: This week in...2003

Stevenage FC

Stevenage FC - Credit: Archant

Can Stevenage’s class of 2014 learn from Westley’s rescue job 11 years ago?

Stevenage were still in trouble at the wrong end of the Nationwide Conference table come the end of March 2003.

Earlier that month, a 2-0 victory at Barnet – the first since mid-January – offered hope of survival but points were still needed to stave off the drop.

On March 22, Graham Westley took his side up to Scarborough, who weren’t that far from challenging for the play-offs.

It would be tough, but Westley had transformed the squad’s mindset and that belief proved critical; Boro won 2-1 at the McCain Stadium thanks to goals from Dino Maamria and Danny Carroll.

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Three days later at Broadhall Way was arguably a bigger game – Kettering Town.

Boro had already been replaced at the bottom of the table by the Poppies, who were the ones to put them there back on Boxing Day, but they were still five points from safety in 21st.

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Having made his debut at Scarborough, Tony Battersby capped his home debut with his first Stevenage goal as Boro ran out 2-0 winners against Kettering.

Anthony Elding was the other goalscorer as Stevenage moved above Leigh RMI to within just two points of Woking in 19th.

More importantly, these were the first two of six straight victories that catapulted the club from the bottom four all the way up to a comfortable mid-table position by mid-April.

And with Stevenage currently in a relegation battle, there’s little doubt such a run now would be welcome

* Pete Hayman runs BoroGuide, the Stevenage FC internet resource. For more information visit or follow him on twitter @boroguide

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