PROUD boss Paul Crosbie praised the gutsy attitude of his players after March Town United were beaten 4-0 by Wisbech Town in the Fen Derby.

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The scoreline was harsh on the Hares, who showed how far they had come since their 8-1 pasting at the hands of the Fenmen in July’s pre-season clash.

Crosbie’s determined troops, who were being driven on by former Wisbech players Max Mattless, Lewis Thompson, Sam Darlow and Danny Emmington, frustrated their Fenland neighbours in the first half of Tuesday’s Red Insure (League) Cup preliminary round tie.

But two goals inside seven second-half minutes from teenager Toby Ogbonna left March chasing the game, and late strikes from Lewis Clayton and Matt Lunn put a gloss on the scoreline.

Crosbie said: “I’m delighted because we challenged and we didn’t make it easy for them. You look at the resources of the clubs and we’re light years behind.

“We folded in the second half of the pre-season match but Tuesday was never a 4-0 game. They deserved to win it, but 4-0 doesn’t tell the story. It doesn’t tell of our endeavour.

“Our attitude was spot on and it’s about progression. I spoke to the board of directors afterwards and they were chuffed to bits.”

Fenmen boss Steve Appleby also said he was impressed by March’s progress under Crosbie.

“It was never going to be like the pre-season game because March have come a long way since then,” he said.

“Paul walked into a minefield really, and he was on a hiding to nothing at the start, but he has kept working and they are improving.”

The Hares fell to eighth in the Thurlow Nunn First Division after Thompson’s early goal failed to prevent a 2-1 defeat to Great Yarmouth Town on Saturday.

They will be looking to halt their three-game losing streak away at Brightlingsea Regent tomorrow.

Crosbie said: “I was really low after the league defeats to Fakenham and Yarmouth. I told the players they needed to go away and self-evaluate.

“Forget who is good and who you think should be in the team and concentrate on doing your best. On Tuesday they came out and they did their best.”

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