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Full Time

Match Report

Diamonds were held by a late Leiston penalty in a rollercoaster encounter at Hayden Road.

The visitors started the brighter and were ahead inside 14 minutes when Jake Hutchings bundled in a free-kick. Rushden improved as the half wore on though and, shortly before the break, striker Jordan Graham scored his first goal for the club with a terrific scissor-kick that the keeper tipped onto the post before it rolled into the far corner.

A pulsating second half began with Leiston re-establishing their lead as Hutchings poked in following a corner from the left. Another corner led to a powerful header that Fernando Bell-Toxtle cleared off the line, and that proved crucial as Diamonds completely turned the game on its head in the space of two minutes. Firstly Nathan Tshikuna slotted home a penalty after Shane Bush was pulled back, and then Jesse Akubuine thumped home a rebound despite the best efforts of a defender on the line. There was to be late drama though as the away side won a penalty of their own five minutes from time, and William Davies rolled it past Dean Snedker to ensure a share of the spoils.

Full match report to follow…


Diamonds entertain Leiston at Hayden Road on Saturday with our friends from Suffolk making a near 120-mile trip to deepest Northamptonshire. We wish them well on their journey and hope they enjoy their day and journey back home safely.

It’s 5th versus 7th in the league table with the sides competing with 6th placed Alvechurch for a play-off place. 11 points separate the sides with 5 games left so it’s very much a must win for Leiston who have had an impressive season that they will be desperate to keep going. They won the reverse fixture in Suffolk so Diamonds will be keen to make amends for that reverse.

Diamonds are unbeaten in three and have won four of the last 7 with just one defeat at 4th placed Peterborough Sports in that run. A goalless draw at relegation threatened Biggleswade on Tuesday night kept the points total ticking over. 3 wins from 5 will definitely clinch the play-offs for Andy Burgess’ men but 2 or even 1 might be enough given the games others have to play but it will be nothing less than full gas today for Andy’s boys.

Andy changed up the team midweek and has a set of new young faces to call from to support the team who have performed so well for 5 months. Lewis Johnson on loan from MK Dons, Jordan Graham former Leicester City trainee, Lauric Diakiesse from Kettering who has his first Diamonds goal and Nigel Chikamba from the U21 Academy ranks. The defence looks solid and largely picks itself but further forward availability and form will determine the formation the manager goes with.

Today’s game is our annual Community Day. This will be the second part of their day, having just completed a sponsored walk. We will welcome in great numbers AFCR&D Community players and parents at the end of their sponsored walk. Please make all the Community players and their accompanying adults feel welcome. 11 Community Players will lead the Diamonds Team onto the pitch before kick-off, they will have a pitch walk around at half time so give them a round of applause, and finish the day with a post-match penalty shoot-out.

These youngsters are the future fans, volunteers, and players of the future and we need to encourage them and their adults as much as we can to enjoy their Saturday afternoons at Hayden Road.

We’d love some of these young folk to join us in the media team as part of their development like Joseph McCormack did a few years back. He has blossomed as a commentor, writer, interviewer and tannoy announcer and truly honed his skills at Diamonds. I’m sure he will go on to bigger and better things but there is no reason why one of the folk attending on Saturday couldn’t be the next Joseph!!

I’m hoping to make my return to the media team on Saturday after a bit of a break and looking forward to a cracking contest between two good sides competing at the top end of the table.

So tune in to Radio Diamonds and our Twitter updates if you can’t make the game and look out for the post match interviews and match reports. We really do bring you all the action with our trademark balance and infectious enthusiasm. Just listen when the goals go in!!

Enjoy the game.

Paul Judd
Media Team



Date Time League Season Match Day Attendance Man of the Match Captain
Sat, 2nd Apr, 2022 3:00 pm Southern League Premier Division Central 2021/22 36 712 Jesse Akubuine Fernando Bell-Toxtle


Club1st Half2nd HalfFull Time Score
The Diamonds123


The Diamonds

13Dean Snedker Goalkeeper
Patrick Casey Defender
Samuel Warburton Defender
Fernando Bell-Toxtle Midfielder
Liam Dolman Defender
Shane Bush Defender 72'
Nathan Tshikuna Midfielder 65'
Jesse Akubuine Midfielder 67'
William Jones Forward 15'
Jordan Graham Forward 39'
Connor Furlong Midfielder
Jack Snelus Forward
Adriel George Midfielder 75'
Benjamin Diamond Forward 72'
Lauric Diakiesse Forward 15'
Lewis Johnson Forward

Manager: Andy Burgess
Coach: Scott Carlin
Sports Therapist: Roisin O’Farrell
Goalkeeper Coach: Nathan Gaunt
Assistant Manager: Lee Glover


Samuel Donkin Goalkeeper
Baris Altintop Defender 78'
Sebastian Dunbar Defender
Joseph Marsden Midfielder
Adam Bailey-Dennis Defender
Jake Hutchings Defender 14', 49'
Finlay Barnes Midfielder
George Quantrell Midfielder
William Davies Forward 85'
Brendan Ocran Forward
Oluwasijuola Odelusi Defender
Oliver Saunders Defender
Iuri Mendes Fernandes Defender
Adam Mills Midfielder
Sonny Wright Goalkeeper

Joint Manager: Darren Eadie
Joint Manager: Chris Wigger
Coach: Lee Norfolk
Kit Manager: Trevor Harrison
Physiotherapist: Nathan Croft
Goalkeeper Coach: Nigel Ling

Match Officials

RefereeAssistant Referee 1Assistant Referee 2
Sam WessonAdam Brierley-LewisCallum Hutton


Hayden Road
Hayden Road Sports Ground, Hayden Road, Rushden, Northamptonshire NN10 0HX

AFC Rushden & Diamonds

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