Saturday, 21st December 2013
Boston Town
2 : 1
AFC Rushden & Diamonds

Boston Town 2, AFC R&D 1

Poachers continue their unbeaten run with win over high-fliers

Boston Town 2, AFC R&D 1

On the shortest day of the year, AFC Rushden & Diamonds' travelling army of fans had the longest faces at the final whistle.

Just a week earlier they had sparked genuine title hopes with a thrilling win over Spalding.

But that victory was a distant memory as Nathan Collins' rapidly-improving side stunned them with a deserved 2-1 success.

Josh Ford fired the hosts ahead midway through first half. Matt Kennedy was cynically scythed down by a foul that had the home fans baying for a red card. A yellow was all that was produced but the Poachers got their reward when Daryl Clare's free-kick wasn't properly cleared and Ford pounced on the loose ball for his 14th goal of the campaign.

In truth, it was just about the only decent chance for the Poachers in the first half, while the visitors hit the post and missed a couple of other good opportunities.

But Boston had looked resolute at the back, with Ricky Drury in commanding form in goal, and things looked even more promising in the early part of the second period when the creativity of Town's midfield four started to unpick the Diamonds defence more regularly.

With Paul Goodhand playing in the hole behind Ford in a  4-4-1-1 formation, the Poachers began looking more threatening.

So it was a blow when Diamonds equalised when a vehemently disputed free-kick given for a harsh-looking handball was bundled home by Alex Deakin .

It seemed as if that might be a turning point for the away side's better-paid stars. 

But Boston responded almost immediately when Ford latched onto a slack backpass. As defenders raced back to block his route to goal, he timed his square ball perfectly for the onrushing Goodhand to smash home what proved to be the winner.

Diamonds piled on some late pressure but it was mainly huff and puff - and the loud celebrations from within Town's dressing room bore witness to the new-found togetherness and team spirit that Collins and his team have already forged.

Town: Drury, Lambley, Jackson, Wilson, Wood, Pinner, Kennedy, Goodhand, Ford, Clare, Borbely, subs used: Iley, Nuttell, Bryant

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