Rhys Oates hat-trick outshines Michael Woods' return in Pools reserves win

Rhys Oates.
Rhys Oates.

A Rhys Oates hat-trick went some way to outshining a second string return for midfielder Michael Woods in Hartlepool United Reserves win at Mansfield.

Midfielder Woods played 65 minutes of the emphatic victory, having spent a month on the sidelines with an Achilles injury.

But it was Oates, also returning to Pools from a loan spell at fifth tier Gateshead, who stole the show, netting three times as Sam Collins' second string continued their 100% start to the season.

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Pools got off to the perfect start. After just 10 minutes Brad Walker fed Oates who hit the post with his first effort but slotted home at the second time of asking.

Scorer of the opener Oates then returned the favour for Walker, skipping past the challenge of one Town defender and crossing for the midfielder to convert.

The hosts pulled one back midway through the opening 45 through Jack Thomas before Jack Blackford fed Josh Hawkes who restored Pools' two-goal advantage.

Woods, who is in line for a first-team return against Carlisle United this weekend, provided the ammunition for the fourth. It was the 26-year-old's corner which found Oates, who nodded in the fourth.

And Oates added his third and Pools fifth just after the hour, running on to Kenton Richardson’s cross to tuck home.

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