Cray Wanderers 0, Lowestoft Town 1

Lowestoft Town returned from Kent with a hard earned victory to ensure they lost no ground in the Ryman League Premier Division title race.

On an evening when the top three all recorded impressive wins, the Blues followed suit against fourth-placed Cray, with a goal from midfielder Jamie Forshaw early in the second half proving decisive.

Andy Reynolds' penalty save after just two minutes was also a key moment as Lowestoft remained seven points behind leaders Sutton, who thrashed Croydon 5-0, with five games in hand.

Lowestoft also maintained the status quo with the other two sides above them following Kingstonian's win at Maidstone and Bury Town's success at Folkestone Invicta.

The night didn't start well for the Blues, with the late arrival of Greg Crane and Adam Smith due to traffic congestion prompting a defensive reshuffle – and it looked to be getting a whole lot worse when Cray were quickly awarded a spot-kick.

But Reynolds came to the rescue with an excellent save to his left to deny Danny Phillips and after that escape the visitors gradually began to settle, even though there were few clear-cut chances in a tight opening period.

All that changed two minutes after the break however when Lee McGlone was impeded on the edge of the area. Forshaw stepped up to take the free-kick and turned away in triumph as his well struck effort went in off a post. A similar effort from Cray's Bremner was held by Reynolds before play switched to the other end, with Forshaw hitting the side-netting after good work from Dale Cockrill.

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There were further chances for the Blues, with Dave King producing a finger-tip save to deny McAlone and substitute Crane heading debutant Michael Frew's corner just over. But they had to withstand some late pressure and Reynolds was required to make a number of fine stops to ensure his side took all three points.

• Lowestoft: Reynolds, Cave-Brown (Crane, 21), Ainsley, Fisk, Haynes-Brown, Gaughran, Forshaw (Smith, 80), Cockrill, McGlone, Stock (Frew, 46), Francis. Subs not used: Godbold, Clark.

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