EFL: Chris Wilder makes it a double, Norwich hit seven against Reading

Ali Al-Habsi
Reading goalkeeper Ali Al-Habsi was certainly not feeling pretty in pink after his side's thumping defeat at Norwich

On a day that England enjoyed its finest weather of 2017 so far, two teams became the first to earn promotion in the EFL this season.

BBC Sport takes a look at a few things you may have missed in the EFL and in non-league, including a record-equalling win and a record-breaking goal.

History repeating

Billy Sharp
Sheffield United's 26-goal striker Billy Sharp shares an embrace with manager Chris Wilder
  • 9 April 2016 - Chris Wilder secures promotion with Northampton Town at Sixfields.
  • 8 April 2017 - Chris Wilder secures promotion with Sheffield United at Sixfields.

It has been a pretty incredible couple of seasons for the Blades boss.

Since the start of 2015-16, his record stands at played 88, won 55, drawn 22 and lost 11.

The boyhood Blades fan, ballboy and player walked out on the Cobblers to take the job at Bramall Lane in May 2016 after guiding them to the League Two title with 99 points.

United need four more points to be League One champions and, if they win their remaining four matches, they will hit the 100-point mark.

Promotion back to the Championship brought an end to Sheffield United's six-year stay in the third tier.

They put their fans, many of whom were watching on a beamback at Bramall Lane, through a tough 90 minutes after falling behind to a Marc Richards strike just before the break.

But they levelled through Leon Clarke's goal before John Fleck grabbed a late winner.

Wilder told BBC Radio Sheffield: "It's just incredible. It's life-changing and I feel quite emotional about it.

"We all put our heart and soul into it and they're a special group of players and they deserve to go down as that because they have had pressure on them week in and week out. I am so proud of them.

"The scenes at the end of the game and in the dressing room will live with me for a lifetime."

He added: "We're after wins. That group of players is not going to stop.

"We are after 100 points, four wins and putting ourselves in the record book."

Rovers return

Darren Ferguson
Darren Ferguson has now won four promotions as a manager

It was double joy in South Yorkshire as League Two leaders Doncaster joined the Blades in earning promotion.

Darren Ferguson's men endured a torrid run of form in 2015-16 that ended in them surprisingly being relegated to the fourth tier.

The nadir of their season came with a 4-1 defeat by Colchester in March that left Ferguson to sum up the match by saying his side had shown "no character, no leadership, nothing".

It has been a completely different scenario this campaign, though, as Rovers have shown their class throughout the season and secured promotion on Saturday with a 1-0 win over Mansfield.

Ferguson told BBC Radio Sheffield: "The focus all week has been on winning promotion here at home.

"I said to the players before the game 'we are going to get this done but how do we do it? By default with other teams losing or do you want to do it by winning the game?'

"The players showed tremendous character.

"It's a massive turnaround from where we were 12 months ago and I have to thank the board. We recruited good characters and I have got a dressing room I can trust."

It's not about how you start...

... apart from when it is.

Byron Moore
Byron Moore's goal was just his second of the season

On the day that people became horse racing experts for the day for the Grand National, nobody got off to as quick a start as Bristol Rovers.

Byron Moore gave the visitors the lead after just 11 seconds at AFC Wimbledon.

Moore's goal was enough to give Darrell Clarke's side a 1-0 victory and put himself in the League One club's record books as the scorer of their fastest ever goal.

Clarke told BBC Radio Bristol: "We knew it was going to be a tough game so it was great to get a dream start.

"We're now the best Rovers team in 17 years with our points return and the boys can enjoy that accolade and go into Easter with their heads held high."

Irvine gets Canaries singing again

EFL
The EFL were as surprised as anyone else with Norwich's first-half blitz

What a difference three days can make.

Norwich's dismal second-half showing in their 3-0 defeat by Huddersfield on Wednesday prompted interim boss Alan Irvine to say: "We went from being in a promising position to caving in and that is something the new manager needs to address. I have been frank with the players and they have said the same among themselves. We cannot cave in like this."

Whatever Irvine said clearly worked as the Canaries scored five times in the opening 35 minutes and led 6-1 at half-time, stunning fourth-placed Reading.

Thereafter things calmed down somewhat and the hosts ended up claiming a 7-1 over Jaap Stam's men.

Sadly it might well be a case of too little too late for the Norfolk side as they are nine points outside the play-offs with five games to play.

Needless to say, Irvine was in slightly higher spirits on Saturday, telling BBC Radio Norfolk: "That's what the players are capable of doing when they play to a high level.

"It was an outstanding performance. Scoring six goals in one half doesn't happen anywhere very often, it was amazing."

"Full credit to the players because they took a lot of criticism, and rightly so, for their performance at Huddersfield, so they deserve praise."

Meanwhile in the National League...

They say that good weather can do funny things to you and that was no more apparent than in the National League.

Promotion hopefuls Tranmere were hitting their straps before the visit of struggling Solihull on Saturday and took a 3-0 lead just before the break thanks to Cole Stockton's hat-trick.

Not to be outdone, Connor Jennings grabbed a treble of his own and Andy Cook, Liam Ridehalgh and Aaron Collins also got on the scoresheet to help Rovers to a 9-0 win.

The margin of victory matched that of Tranmere's biggest ever win, a 13-4 win over Oldham in 1934.

You might have seen the story about the dog stopping play in the Evo-Stik game between Halesowen and Skelmersdale for six minutes...

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Halesowen ended up winning 1-0

Well, Bromley decided that dogs were a little bit clichéd and decided to go slightly more unusual in their choice of pitch-invading animals, as a pheasant went for a stroll on the pitch during the first half of their game against Wrexham.

The Hayes Lane side, nicknamed the Ravens, might try to invite their feathered friend back for future fixtures after they clinched a 4-3 win.

And finally, Maidstone got a little more than they bargained for on the coach they had booked back from Gateshead.

The Stones probably felt like partying after coming from behind to secure a 2-1 win at the Heed, so you would imagine they were delighted when a party bus turned up to transport them to Newcastle.

Maidstone
The atmosphere on the bus is far better than this picture suggests...

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