Irish Premiership: New boys Ards two clear at top of table

Ards won 4-3 away to Ballymena United
Ards are top of the table after their 4-3 win away to Ballymena United

Irish Premiership new boys Ards are two points clear at the top of the table after beating Ballymena United 4-3.

Gareth Tommons scored their 89th-minute clincher at the Showgrounds to move last season's Championship winners ahead of Crusaders and Linfield.

The Crues drew 1-1 at Coleraine while Linfield were 4-0 winners over Glenavon who had Rhys Marshall sent-off.

Carrick drew 3-3 with Ballinamallard, Glentoran beat Portadown 1-0 and Dunganon won 2-1 away to Cliftonville.

Relive the Irish Premiership action

Ards have made a dream start on their return to the top division, with three wins and a draw in their first four matches.

Stuart McMullan gave them an early lead but Allan Jenkins and Cathair Friel replied to put United in front.

Goals by Emmett Friars and Joe McKinney edged Ards 3-2 up before Caolan Loughran levelled.

Ards midfielder Fra Brennan on Twitter
Ards midfielder Fra Brennan went off injured but caught up with the result later

Tommons pounced late on to clinch victory for the County Down side.

"We know hard times are ahead but we'll enjoy what is going on at the minute," said Ards manager Niall Currie.

"The guys dug in and we looked a lot more secure in the second half. Then we got that wee break with Gareth scoring the winner. Everyone is over the moon."

Ballymena manager David Jeffrey was unhappy with is side's defending.

"To concede the goals that we did, to say it was schoolboyish and basic would be an understatement.

"We have got to learn to do our jobs. They were elementary mistakes and there is no point in me hiding behind that."

Champions Crusaders and last season's runners-up Linfield sit two points behind Ards.

The Crues were held to a draw for the second week running as David Ogilby's free-kick gave Coleraine a 1-1 draw after Gavin Whyte had given the title holders an early lead at the Showgrounds.

Aaron Burns scored twice for Linfield and Josh Carson and Sean Ward netted the others in the 4-0 win over Glenavon who had Rhys Marshall sent-off for a challenge on Chris Casement.

Dungannon made it back-to-back wins by stunning Cliftonville 2-1 at Solitude.

Andy Mitchell got both for the Swifts who had thumped Coleraine 4-0 a week earlier.

Kym Nelson's 52nd-minute strike earned Glentoran a 1-0 win over Portadown who had former Glenman Niall Henderson sent-off late on for two yellow cards.

Danske Bank Irish Premiership - 20 August
Ballymena Utd3-4Ards
Carrick Rangers3-3Ballinamallard Utd
Cliftonville1-2Dungannon Swifts
Coleraine1-1Crusaders
Linfield4-0Glenavon
Portadown0-1Glentoran