Diamonds suffered defeat at St Ives but crucially remained three points clear in fifth place.
They never really got going throughout the contest, with the hosts harrying them into mistakes, seemingly being the first to every loose ball and creating some good opportunities. Paddy Casey made a vital block inside 30 seconds, though Rushden did respond and went close through Fernando Bell-Toxtle’s powerful run and strike that was deflected over. From the resulting corner Ben Diamond’s header across goal was turned into his own net by ex-Rushden man Nabil Shariff, but the strike was controversially ruled out for offside. St Ives went mightily close from a corner that was flicked just wide, and Dean Snedker made a brilliant save from close-range following a deep free-kick.
The visitors improved in the second half following a change in system and the introduction of AJ George. Will Jones hooked an effort narrowly wide, and George then fired over in Diamonds’ best chance of the game. Nathan Tshikuna flashed a free-kick just past the post, but St Ives continued to look sharper and, after Shariff missed a good chance, they forged ahead when substitute Neremiah Richard-Noel was left free at a corner to head home. George curled another shot wide, but they couldn’t force a leveller which would have confirmed a play-off place following Alvechurch’s loss at champions Banbury.
Full match report to follow…
|Man of the Match
|Mon, 18th Apr, 2022
|Southern League Premier Division Central
|Assistant Referee 1
|Assistant Referee 2
|Quattro-Tech Westwood Road
|Westwood Road, St Ives, Huntingdonshire PE27 6DT