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Diamonds & Beaconsfield March On At The Top

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The Evo-Stik League South East got off lightly as far as the weather was concerned on Saturday, with only the games at Northwood and Thame United falling foul of waterlogged pitches.

AFC Rushden & Diamonds maintained their three-point advantage at the summit after a hard-fought 2-1 win at bottom side Arlesey Town.

Joel Gyasi gave Diamonds the lead 5 minutes before the break.

But the basement club levelled things through Henry Musay 7 minutes into the second half.

But a Ben Farrell penalty just past the hour-mark secured victory for the visitors, who are now sixteen league matches unbeaten.

Beaconsfield Town maintained their title challenge with another tougher-than-anticipated 3-2 win at second-bottom Barton Rovers.

Rovers led through Sam Oyeniran`s 38th minute opener which Callum Webb cancelled out 5 minutes later.

Five minutes after half-time, Tre Mitford put the visitors ahead, only for Andrew Phillips to pull last season`s play-off finalists back on level terms 4 minutes later.

Bajram Pashaj won it for Beaconsfield 18 minutes from time.

The gap between the top two and the play-off places is five points, with AFC Dunstable, who didn`t play on Saturday, Hayes & Yeading United, Chalfont St Peter and Cambridge City currently occupying the other top six spots.

Hayes & Yeading were comfortable 4-0 home winners over Bedford Town, with Duncan Culley from the penalty spot and Manny Duku giving them a 2-0 interval lead, and Scott Donnelly and Ismael Ehui adding two more in the second half.

Chalfont`s seven-game unbeaten run came to an end at home to Moneyfields, who are eighth but six points adrift of the play-off spots now.

Remmel Clarke gave the Saints the boost of an early 6th minute lead, but they couldn`t capitalise, and a Dan Wooden brace in the 56th and 62nd minutes won it for the Hampshire side.

Cambridge City triumphed 2-1 at the Runnymede Stadium against Egham Town, with James Hall and Jordan Williams scoring for City within 2 minutes of each other in the opening half, and Brendan Matthew replying on the hour-mark.

Hartley Wintney are just a point behind the top six but didn`t play on Saturday.

Elsewhere, Sonny French scored the only goal of the game right on half-time to seal Aylesbury United`s win at Calthorpe Park against Fleet Town, while Luke Heneghan bagged a brace in a minute midway through the second half in Kempston Rovers` 2-1 win against Marlow at Hillgrounds – Junaid Bell having given the visitors a 28th minute lead.

And the game between Aylesbury FC and Ashford Town (Middx) finished 2-2 in which Brian Haule twice gave the Moles the lead which Jack Beadle and Samad Kazi cancelled out.

Aylesbury were reduced to ten-men just on the half-time break when Ty Deacon appeared to throw an Ashford player to the ground.

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About Author

Former Swansea City and Kettering Town defender who has been managing the likes of Kettering Town u18s, Rothwell Town, Desborough Town and Wellingborough Town for 33 years as well as being technical director at AFC Rushden & Diamonds. Began in non-League journalism as editor of Team Talk magazine back in the early 1990s and then as editor of Non-League Daily, joining Pitchero to set up Pitchero Non-League in January 2011. Also works for the National League.

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