TONY James ended up with three stitches in a head wound at Telford on Tuesday and now he’s owned up to stitching up teammate Andy Sandell.

Newport County AFC left-back Sandell put the Exiles 4-1 up but then was credited with an own goal in a crazy game against the nine-men Bucks.

But now that the dust has settled James has admitted that he was the culprit who headed past County goalkeeper Lenny Pidgeley.

“I can admit now that it was me,” said James as he prepares to take on promotion rivals Grimsby Town at Rodney Parade tomorrow.

“Andy took the blame but it was me. I tried to head it clear and it looped past Lenny and into the top corner, but it was a great win and we were delighted to get the three points on the road.

“It sets us up nicely for the Grimsby game and what should be another big test.”

The Mariners are up to fourth in the Blue Square Bet Premier, five points behind County, after a 4-1 demplition of Luton Town last Friday and a 3-0 win over Gateshead on Tuesday.

They are unbeaten on their travels this season with a win at Hereford United and four draws but James is banking on the County fans helping their side to remain unbeaten at their new home.

James watched last week’s late win over Southport from the stands as he sat out the game with a strained abductor muscle and he enjoyed the experience.

“It was frustrating not to play but it gave me a chance to watch with the fans and that was fun,” he said.

“Obviously expectations are high at the moment and we started that match a bit slowly so some people got a bit anxious but overall they were patient and roared us on to another win.”

After conceding the first goal against Southport and Telford, James is aware of the need to make a better start tomorrow.

“It shouldn’t take a goal to spur us on,” he added.

“We need to start at a high tempo because I’m sure Grimsby will be going for the win.

“They will be up there at the end of the season and these are the teams we need to take points off.”