ON a night where a stand bearing his name was officially opened, former Reds chairman and owner Eric Whalley would have been proud of this Stanley performance.

The energy, effort and at times effervescence the Reds displayed eventually paid off when substitute Offrande Zanzala grabbed a late winner.

Facing a team riding high in third who had won four games on the spin, Stanley contained them in the first half and almost blew them away with a ferocious 10-minute spell at the start of the second.

Doncaster escaped the onslaught and came on strong but it was the home side who made the breakthrough when Zanzala wriggled clear on the left and squeezed a shot past Marko Marosi at his near post.

It was just reward for the 21-year-old who, after a number of encouraging displays this term, broke his duck for the campaign.

It looked like the breakthrough would come during a one-sided start to the second period when Stanley poured forward at will but couldn’t find a goal.

Dan Barlaser brought a save out of Marosi with a stinging 25-yard effort before Scott Brown curled just wide and Sean McConville was denied a sweeping finish by a brilliant Niall Mason block.

Barlaser then went close again with his curling effort kept out by Marosi before seeing a shot deflected into the keeper’s hands.

Doncaster weathered the storm and threatened themselves. Sub Alfie May escaped the attention of the Stanley defence but his free header was palmed away by Connor Ripley while Ben Whiteman curled a free kick just over the top.

The entertaining second half followed the same pattern as a watchable first even if the opening 45 minutes didn’t quite have the quality of chances.

Stanley old boy Mallik Wilks had the clearest chance for the home side when he raced through the centre after a swift Doncaster move but his effort was deflected behind for a corner on 21 minutes.

That came after a moment of concern for the home side when Mark Hughes tried to be too cute with his back header to Ripley and almost let John Marquis in but the Stanley keeper recovered well.

The Reds were nearly the architect of their own downfall again 10 minutes before the interval. Ripley came well to punch clear a corner only for Jordan Clark’s miscue to send the ball back where it came from but the referee came to the home side’s rescue by awarding a free kick.

Stanley came desperately close to taking the lead in the final throes of the half, McConville hitting the woodwork twice in a matter of seconds. First he fired a free kick right footed against the base of the post and, when the ball was worked back to him, curled a thumping left footed strike against the bar.

That meant it was honours even at the break but Stanley were celebrating all three come full time.