AFC Rushden & Diamonds 0-1 Barwell

Rushden suffered a fourth consecutive defeat as they were narrowly edged out at Hayden Road.

The visitors bossed the opening half as Melis Bushaj shot wide and then home debutant Loris Marcimain made a terrific diving save to deny Janos Bodnar. He was beaten moments later though as a neat through ball found Beck-Ray Enoru who calmly rolled it home. The striker then poked wide, and just before half-time Brady Hickey hooked an effort that was easily held.

Diamonds improved in the second period and were almost level when Jim Burnside was crowded out before he then shot wide in a separate move. Loanee Joel Anker forced a save after meeting a Burnside flick-on, and a series of long balls into the box were repelled by a stoic Barwell defence. The home pressure continued to intensify as Jenson Cooper was brought on, and it could have led to a late equaliser as Andy Kanga’s goalbound shot was deflected wide. They went even closer deep into stoppage time when Luke Massingham towered above everybody to meet a corner, but his header flashed millimetres over the bar.

Full match report to follow

Diamonds Player of the Match: Loris Marcimain

Attendance: 329