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Tuesday, 29 October, 2002, 22:14 GMT
Gillingham 0-4 Wolves

Striker Nathan Blake scored a stunning hat-trick as Wolves romped to comfortable victory against 10-man Gillingham.

Blake's left the field on a stretcher following a heavy challenge in the penalty area from Nayron Nosworthy in the 25th minute.

But after Nosworthy had received his marching orders and Colin Cameron scored the resulting spot-kick, Blake returned to steal the show and seal a third successive victory.

The home side began brightly and Guy Ipoua fired in a long-range shot which was safely gathered by England Under-21 international keeper Matt Murray.

Former Scunthorpe striker Ipoua should have done better with a close-range header in the 10th minute that cleared the crossbar.

The home side's hopes of a third successive victory diminished when Nosworthy was dismissed for the first time in his career, and Cameron despatched the penalty.

Ipoua was booked for disputing the referee's decision and the game threatened to boil over when Andy Hessenthaler and Blake got yellow cards for a minor scuffle.

As the half entered stoppage-time, Blake added a second for Wanderers, latching onto Ndah's through-ball before slotting low past Jason Brown.

Dave Jones' side started the second half in the same vein, and after Kenny Miller spurned two chances, Blake netted his second of the game after good work from Cameron.

Late injuries

Blake completed his hat-trick with a cool finish just before the hour, turning his marker and driving the ball low past the stranded Brown for his 10th of the season.

Wolves came close to a fifth goal as Kevin Cooper's 25-yard volley crashed back off the woodwork.

Gillingham had their chances with Ipoua firing wide from the edge of the box and defender Chris Hope coming close twice.

But Wolves went looking for more goals and Miller was unlucky not to cap off an impressive display as his low drive hit a post and bounced to safety.

Late injuries to Cameron and Miller marred a convincing display as Wolves overtook their opponents in the First Division table.


Gillingham: Brown, Nosworthy, Hope, Ashby, Perpetuini, Hessenthaler, Smith, Saunders, Shaw, Ipoua, Sidibe. Subs: Bartram, Leon Johnson, James, Spiller, Tommy Johnson.

Wolverhampton: Murray, Edworthy, Lescott, Clyde, Irwin, Ndah, Ince, Cameron, Cooper, Blake, Miller. Subs: Oakes, Butler, Naylor, Ingimarsson, Sturridge.

Referee: M Messias (N Yorkshire)


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