Northwich Vics 8 Hednesford Town 0

VICS turned up the flame under their promotion campaign on Saturday, while Hednesford felt a wind-chill factor of -8ºC.

Northwich's second-half performance was as merciless as anything seen by home fans since Vics beat Nantwich Town 10-0 a decade ago in an FA Cup qualifier.

But Nantwich knew they were no match from the start, whereas Hednesford are of the same standard as Vics. Well, technically.

Vics had rediscovered their the scoring boots on Tuesday, when they hammered a poor Worksop Town 4-1 at home, and they carried the confidence into Saturday's game.

In truth, Hednesford did not do too badly until Northwich's third goal. It had looked as if they might make a fight of it, but once Paul Brayson had made it 3-0 they surrendered. It had become a game of unequal forces, as must have been the case of their best league victory, a 9-0 walloping of Stalybridge Celtic in 1959-60.

Vics' two-goal opening had suggested they had emerged from a poor midwinter run as their old sunny selves. But their game drifted again until Brayson dragged them back on course.

Then they set about humiliating Hednesford and it seemed every attack would produce a goal.

The visitors, who can recall beating Vics 7-1 a few years back, were ruthlessly taken apart: n4 minutes: Vics had already had three shots before Matt Garner's drive into the box and Mike Byrne's cross for Mark Sale to head downward into the net. n16 mins: Brayson shot goalwards and Gary Hateley spilled the ball and Byrne steered inside a post. n56 mins: Carr again found Brayson, but this time the striker had to carry the ball 40 yards from

inside his own half into the penalty area and make light of Richard Teesdale's attentions with a left-foot shot inside the far post. n65 mins: Sale was left clutching his ankle after winning a challenge against Ian Wright, but he had released Byrne and he expertly lifted the ball over Hateley. n71 mins: Carr and Chris Williams launched a purposeful attack down the right flank. Danny Mayman tiptoed between defenders and selected his spot just as carefully. n72 mins: Carr pulled the ball back from the by-line for Williams to turn home. n79 mins: Stockport loanee Williams provided a similarly clinical finish to a move that bewildered Hednesford. Chris Gaghan, Jonny Allan and Byrne take the credit. n90 mins Mayman headed the ball out of his own half, Williams redirected it into the danger zone and Byrne applied the perfect finish - to the move, the match and his own ebullient performance.

Afterward Vics stewards moved smartly to contain a protest against the board, manager and players by a group of Hednesford fans.

They had picked the wrong people to blame.

Vics were wholly responsible - and didn't the home fans love it!

VICS: Rogers; McCarthy (Gaghan 71), Payne, Charnock, Garner; Mayman, Allan, Carr (Elliot 74), Byrne; Sale (Williams 66), Brayson.

Att: 855 Star Man: Mike Byrne, boiling point throughout Next Best: Mike Carr Team Rating: 5 Hednesford Star: Sean Platt Team Rating: 1 Match Rating: 4 nLast Tuesday, Mike Carr (25 minutes), Mike Byrne (50) Danny Mayman (70), Paul Brayson (71) were on the mark for Vics, while Worksop, who had Paul Simpkins sent off in 56 minutes, netted a consolation through Gary Owers. The attendance was 585.