Newcomers to the league Daventry Town were the visitors to Sharpenhoe Road on Saturday with Rovers looking to sustain a solid start to their league campaign. Early doors it was the home side on the front foot attack-wise with Nathan Tshikuna having a shot at goal which ballooned over in the first minute. With 5 minutes gone Rovers took the lead when, from a free-kick conceded by the visitors on Tony Williams Jr, Tshikuna stepped up and fired a magnificent effort in off the upright with Daventry keeper Justin Cerga rooted to the spot. Daventry hit back quickly and Kyle Forster in the Rovers goal had to look lively to smother a dangerous low cross from Daventry left-winger Taylor Orosz who gave Rovers right-back Taishan Griffiths a torrid afternoon. Rovers almost doubled their lead when Williams Jr headed against the bar from a Dean Dummett flick-on. Daventry though did get a foothold in this game and put this early flurry from Rovers behind them on 20 minutes when, from a needless foul conceded by Rovers Sam Gibson, Daventry Towns’ right-winger Jordan Orosz found himself completely unmarked at the back post to head a rather easy equaliser. The away side grew in stature on the back of this equaliser and dominated the remainder of the half with Rovers very definitely on the back foot but the teams went in level at half-time.
Rovers wide men Victor Osubu and Ibby Lukulay came to life early in the second half and Rovers were looking dangerous but failed to capitalise on any scoring opportunities. Lukulay did get clear of the Daventry back-line after 59 minutes but couldn’t find a decisive finish and was denied by keeper Cerga. Back came Daventry and danger-man Taylor Orosz could and should have given the visitors the lead with two efforts after 70 and 71 minutes only to be denied by Forster. Then the pivotal moment of the game as Rovers right-back Griffiths made a rash late tackle on Daventry centre-forward Luke Emery, the referee pointed immediately to the spot. Emery picked himself up to take the penalty-kick but his effort was kept out by a magnificent Forster save low to his right-hand post with the resultant corner coming to nothing for Daventry. The visitors were then made to pay dearly for this profligacy when, just two minutes later, Osubu made a surging run down the right, got to the goal line and his cute cut-back was smashed into the Daventry net by an alert Dylan Gittens to nudge Rovers ahead. For the remainder of the half, It was backs to the wall for Rovers as Town pressed for an equaliser and Stef Bailey, on as a late substitute earned himself a caution after 84 minutes when a touch of desperation seemed to appear in the Rovers defending. However, Rovers held on to their narrow advantage and at the final whistle three points were secured. Daventry would have travelled home kicking themselves, having taken nothing from a game they dominated for long spells, but Rovers will be cheered by the fact their performance on the day hardly warranted a win but lady luck and Kyle Forster shone for them when needed.
Final Score: Barton Rovers 2 (Tshikuna 5, Gittens 79) Daventry Town 1 (Jordan Orosz 20)
Rovers Team: Forster, Griffiths, Jones, Olineran, Sonuga, Gibson, Osubu, Dummett, Williams Jr, Tshikuna (Bailey 81), Lukulay (Gittens 66)
Rovers MOM: Kyle Forster