‘Classic’ away day delights Diamonds boss Peaks

Tom Lorraine's 50th goal for AFC Rushden & Diamonds sealed a 1-0 victory at Kidsgrove Athletic
Tom Lorraine's 50th goal for AFC Rushden & Diamonds sealed a 1-0 victory at Kidsgrove Athletic

Andy Peaks hailed a “classic away performance” as AFC Rushden & Diamonds gained revenge on Kidsgrove Athletic to maintain their play-off push with a 1-0 success.

Just over a month after Kidsgrove had ended Diamonds’ 19-match unbeaten run in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Division One South with a 5-2 win at the Dog & Duck, Peaks’ men hit back to level the score as Tom Lorraine’s 50th goal for the club settled matters in Staffordshire.

Lorraine struck the winner with just 15 minutes remaining and is now one goal away from becoming the club’s all-time leading goalscorer after his latest strike put him level with Alfie Taylor.

It was also a landmark day for Brad Harris who made his 200th appearance for Diamonds.

But boss Peaks was just pleased to see his players “set the record straight”.

“It was a really good win and a fantastic three points for us,” the Diamonds manager said.

“Performance-wise, we have been better than that nut we showed a lot of resilience and we looked dangerous going forward.

“It was probably what you would call a classic away performance.

“I was disappointed with the first half because we weren’t good enough but we improved after half-time and to get the goal was very pleasing.

“It’s a satisfying win for us because they claimed a big against us on our own ground and that hurt us at the time.

“It wasn’t about holding a grudge against them because they are a good club with good people but for our players, I think they wanted to set the record straight and that’s what they did.”

The win sets Diamonds up for a huge clash with second-placed Spalding United on Tuesday night, an evening which sees five of the top six in action.

Diamonds remain in the final play-off position and four points clear of the chasing pack but Peaks knows they are in for another thorough examination in midweek.

“It’s a massive game on Tuesday,” he added.

“We have beaten them twice this season and they will want to put that right.

“They are second in the league for a reason and it will be another very hard game for us.

“But the win at Kidsgrove sets us up and we just want to keep things ticking over.”