DEFENDER Ross Sykes has revealed he predicted he would score twice in Stanley's big win over Walsall on Saturday.

The academy graduate was the unlikely match-winner at the Wham Stadium as John Coleman's men saw off their relegation rivals with a 2-1 victory.

The 20-year-old headed home the opener in the 11th minute after getting on the end of Sean McConville’s free kick.

Walsall equalised on 33 minutes with a rare attack, Nicky Devlin's deflected strike getting the better of Dimitar Evtimov in the Stanley goal.

Sykes popped up with the winner on 69 minutes though, firing home from close range after his initial shot was saved by Saddlers 'keeper Liam Roberts.

“We were working on set-pieces in training on Friday and I scored a few and we came in to the Walsall game and did the same thing,” he told Stanley's website.

“I said before the game I would score two, I don’t know why but after training I just felt I would.

“It’s been a brilliant season for me, I have come in, been playing regularly and scored four goals.

“The big thing against Walsall though was the win.

"It was a team effort and the boys put in the hard work for the win.

“We have had setbacks this season but have always been ready to go again.

"Now we just have to take it game by game and get the wins to stay up.

“We have always been in this together, we all have each other’s backs and, despite our recent results, the mood has remained upbeat in the changing room.”

The result lifted Stanley four points clear of the League One trap door with four games to play.

Picking up positive results between now and the end of the season will be easier said than done though.

Stanley next host title favourites Luton this Saturday, April 20, in a 5.30pm kick-off in front of the Sky TV cameras.

They then travel to sixth-placed Doncaster Rovers the following Tuesday before finishing their campaign at home to Plymouth, currently 18th, and at Portsmouth, who are fourth and firmly in the automatic promotion shake-up as things stand.

As a a result, Coleman knows that despite moving up to 16th there is still plenty of work to do between now and May 4.

"There's not a chance we're safe just yet," the Stanley boss said after the Walsall win.

"There's a lot of hard work to go and we'll be fighting until it's mathematically certain we can stay in this league.

"We know we can compete against any team in this league and we've proven that.

"The Luton, Doncaster and Portsmouth games will be the same.

"We don't fear anyone."