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Gainsborough Trinity's Craig Nelthorpe tells of deep personal battle

By Lincolnshire Echo  |  Posted: October 20, 2012

Craig Nelthorpe

Craig Nelthorpe

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Craig Nelthorpe celebrated his goal on Saturday as someone who had finally emerged from a difficult personal battle.

The Gainsborough midfielder fired home his side's third goal during a 3-0 win over Droylsden at the Northolme, a win which saw Trinity move up to 11th in the Blue Square Bet North table.

Doncaster-born Nelthorpe has had to bide his time this season and has watched most of the action from the bench. But, having started three games in the last four, the 25-year-old underlined his return to form with a superbly taken strike of his own, as well as having a hand in creating two other goals for team-mates Dominic Knowles and Terry Hawkridge.

Nelthorpe first signed for Trinity in June 2011. However, he was released by the club the following November with manager Steve Housham claiming at the time that Nelthorpe had failed to live up to expectations.

"Last year, not many people knew, but my Nanna passed away," said Nelthorpe.

"I was on anti-depressants and I put loads of weight on and I wasn't fit at all. I just wasn't in the right frame of mind.

"I texted the chairman at the beginning of the summer and told him I had worked on my fitness and they gave me a chance to progress from there.

"I had to get my mind right, get my head down and work hard and it's paying off.

"Housh (Steve Housham) and the chairman have had faith in me and I have come back and I have been given a start."

On Saturday, the former York City man confirmed he was back to his best with a man of the match performance.

Nelthorpe was heavily involved in Trinity's first two goals, scored by Knowles and Hawkridge, before scoring the goal his performance deserved after 37 minutes when Henderson rolled the ball into his path and he fired home from the edge of the area.

Nelthorpe is hoping his form will earn him another start on Saturday in the trip to league leaders Brackley.

"It was great to score because my little girl was watching for first time," Nelthorpe added.

"It was good to get on the score sheet, but the main thing is that the team's playing well and hopefully we can progress and make the play-offs again.

"It has been frustrating at times. Obviously with Jamie Yates and Terry Hawkridge playing well I have had to wait for my chance and when it came I had to take it and play well.

"Hopefully I will be selected again in the starting line-up. It would be great to go to Brackley and win, but if we can get a point that would be good."

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