By Joel Lampkin
— Tranmere Talk (@TranmereTalk) December 9, 2017
Tranmere Rovers secured a crucial victory over lowly Torquay United to make it four home wins in their last four appearances at Prenton Park with National league play-offs in reach.
A moment of inspiration saw Dylan Mottley-Henry float the ball into the box and Connor Jennings leaped high to nod home to open the scoring after 36 minutes.
With several chances already gone begging Andy Cook took his efforts well as he poked home a James Norwood cross before bagging a header of his home with 10 minutes left to pay.
Tranmere now sit in eighth position, and just four points off a National League play off spot with a game in hand.
Rovers started well in the adverse conditions, taking the game to the visitors with frontman Cook causing problems in the height area.
The match was very much a cagey affair in the opening 15 minutes, until an injury to Michee Efete halted any momentum for either side.
The player collided with Scott Davies in a seemingly innocuous challenge but medical staff rushed to his assistance and he was eventually stretchered off to a round of applause from all portions of the stadium.
It took until the 35th minute for Tranmere to get going again and a beautifully weighted cross from Mottley-Henry found Jennings whose header dropped past goalkeeper Vincent Durel to open the scoring.
The home side rested on their laurels in the remaining 10 minutes of action, with Torquay stunned at the opener, but a late chance for an equaliser went begging for the visitors.
A corner was woefully cleared by Stephen McNulty and landed at the feet of Ruari Keating who could only fire over from close range.
The second-half mimicked the first in the opening 10 minutes, with the home side holding off a high pressing Torquay.
However, it was McNulty with the first real chance of the period as his effort from a corner was ultimately cleared off the line by Jazzi Barnum-Bobb.
While pressing for another to double his side’e lead Ollie Norburn was one-on-one but his chipped effort was again cleared off the line; this time by captain Sean McGinty.
Tranmere maintained a foothold midway through the second half as James Norwood went close as he raced through on goal but his lobbed effort could only bounce wide.
Despite threatening for much of the half, Rovers finally put the first nail in the coffin as Norwood threaded a low ball into the box for Andy Cook to tap home.
It was just four minutes later, when the big man got his second of the game thanks to the brilliance of young Eddie Clarke.
The full-back raced down the left hand side beating two men in the process and his accurate cross found Cook who rose above two defenders to nod home into the goalkeepers bottom left corner.
Tranmere had all but won the match, but they continued to press for a fourth as Jennings, seeking his second, it from 30 yards out but his effort sailed over the crossbar.
No side could muster much in the closing moments of the match, as the official blew his whistle for full-time and an eruption of cheers rung out from the Super White Army.
Tranmere advanced into ninth position, and just four points outside of a playoff position with a game in hand.
Micky Mellon and his side will now look to prepare for next Saturday’s upcoming clash with Solihull Motors in the FA Trophy.