Great week for in-form Daventry as they close in on the leaders

HAPPY MAN - Daventry Town boss Darran Foster
HAPPY MAN - Daventry Town boss Darran Foster
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Daventry Town virtually wrote their own script last weekend when a comfortable 3-0 win over AFC Hayes coincided with shock defeats for three of the top four teams in the Calor League Division One Central.

They then went on to win 2-0 at Aylesbury United on Wednesday, and are now fourth, just 10 points behind leaders Rugby with six games in hand.

“It could scarcely have been much better for us,” admitted Town boss Darran Foster after only in-form Slough Town of the leading clubs had joined the Purple Army on the victors’ roster.

Improbable scorelines of Uxbridge 3 Rugby Town 1, Dunstable Town 0 Barton Rovers 1 and Beaconsfield SYCOB 0 Chertsey Town 1 were music to the ears of Daventry supporters.

Despite conceding only one goal in recent wins over Barton, Potters Bar and Hayes since the wet weather relented, the Town must not rest on their laurels.

Home games next week against Aylesbury, Kettering Town and Slough will go a long way towards determining whether or not Foster’s men are to develop into serious championship challengers.

There is still everything to play for in the hectic last few weeks of the season.

Third-placed Slough are also a major threat to Daventry’s hopes.

The Rebels have scored 21 goals in winning their last six matches with striker Ed Smith in tip-top form after scoring seven times in that short period.

Smith’s sidekick Johnnie Dyer is also in tip-top form and together the Slough frontrunners have shared 36 league goals already in the current campaign to launch a late bid for promotion after frequent near-misses.

Big-spending Kettering could still make the play-offs but, like Daventry, will have to turn out four times in eight days starting this Saturday because of problems with the Burton Park pitch.

Meanwhile Daventry’s own championship challenge is built squarely around a solid defence which has now conceded only 19 goals in 25 league games.

Of the 276 clubs in the Non-League’s step one to four, only Conference high-flyers Cambridge United can match that statistic going into Saturday’s round of matches which sees the Town take on relegation-threatened North Greenford.

Key central defender Marcel Simpson should be available for the trip to north London after missing the last four victories with a foot injury sustained at home in Birmingham.

In his absence Ollie Wilkinson has performed admirably as a makeshift partner for Liam Dolman, but is better able to utilise his pace when adopting a more familiar right back role.

Foster’s squad now looks to have been finalised for the remainder of the season now that striker Tom Lorraine has been released on recallable loan to UCL outfit Cogenhoe United.