Pretty it certainly wasn't, but Down seconds aren't complaining as the weekend win over the PSNI takes them to 13 points and well clear of the relegation dogfight.

The locals certainly struggled at times and while the 4-0 scoreline flattered them in the end, they restricted their opponents to just one shot on goal over the 70 minutes and that came in the very first attack of the game.

Down scored five goals in their last league outing against Antrim and another four last Saturday saw them end 2007 on a high. They hope 2008 will again be prove fruitful and they can pick up a few more points to finish in a comfortable mid-table position.

Down welcomed back the McClurg brothers, Raymond and Trevor who got through a tremendous amount of work in the middle of the park all afternoon, driving forward when the opportunity arose and dropping deep to defend when necessary.

The locals were forced to travel to the PSNI earlier in the season with just 10 men and while they ended up on the wrong side of a 4-1 scoreline, they finished that particular game with just nine men after Cecil Telford picked up a nasty knee injury.

While last weekend's game wasn't about revenge, the police travelled to Downpatrick with just a handful of the players Down had faced earlier in the season.

The PSNI started well and created the game's opening chance in the first minute but a forward's shot was saved and the danger was averted.

However, Down were a bit slack in the middle of the park and found themselves out-numbered at times.

Philip Brown went close for the home side in the sixth minute, while James Cunningham's probing run ended with Chris Ferguson being robbed off possession just as he was about to pull the trigger.

It was nervy stuff as far as the home side was concerned as it looked as though they would again pay the price for not putting away the many chances they were creating. With the PSNI causing no problems for the Down defence, the focus was on the home side's forwards, led superbly by Mark Elliott who was to finish the game with two goals to his name.

Brown opened the scoring for Down in the 18th minute following a short corner. An initial shot was saved but when the ball came out to the centre forward, her crashed it past the 'keeper with ferocious power to give his side a deserved lead.

If Down had been expecting the floodgates to open at this stage they were very much mistaken, mainly because they were wasteful in front of goal. Brown should have added to his tally, while Elliott and Ferguson also went close.

Down were keen to increase their advantage in the second half and while they once again dominated proceedings, they couldn't put the ball in the net. Brown had one effort saved, but Cunningham will be wondering how he didn't score.

In the 45th minute with just the 'keeper to beat, he opted for power rather than precision and the ball flew wide of the goal. Minutes later from a short corner, the midfielder was caught in two minds. He went to flick the 'keeper before changing his mind, with the net result that the ball was cleared.

But Cunningham is made of stern stuff and with 11 minutes to go he made it 2-0 after a set play from a short corner had broken down. The ball was moved left to Cunningham who was delighted and relieved when his strong shot beat the 'keeper to crash against the backboard.

There was no way back for the visitors and Elliott, who up until this point had been unlucky, produced a sublime piece of skill to score his side's third goal. A brilliant pass from skipper, Willie Price, picked out Elliott who controlled the ball on the reverse before skipping past a defender and crashing the ball past the advancing 'keeper into the net.

There were less than five minutes to go but Elliott wasn't finished. Substitute, David Ferris, set up the striker again and Elliott was delighted to fire home to seal an emphatic win.

This weekend Down face league leaders Lisnagarvey fourths who defeated them earlier in the season with a last minute breakaway goal. With 13 points in the bag, the pressure is off Down who can now go to Hillsborough to enjoy themselves.