Bradford Park Avenue 2 Brackley Town 0

AVENUE ended Brackley's five-game winning National League North run with a comfortable home victory.

In the process, Mark Bower's men put in an excellent performance to claim their third consecutive victory and move level on points with sixth-placed York.

While the first-half spectacle would more likely be described as a dour war of attrition, the second period was open and entertaining as the skilful players from both sides became increasingly involved.

The only real moment of note in the opening 45 came a little over three minutes before the break. Nicky Clee's corner caused all sorts of problems in the Saints defensive ranks and Adam Boyes was able to lash home from point-blank range.

A half-time team talk from Brackley boss Kevin Wilkin saw the Northamptonshire outfit come out a different side.

The third-placed side took the game to the hosts but it was not long before Avenue also started to create chances as the game opened up.

Avenue kept up the pressure when they were in possession and were rewarded with a second goal just after the hour mark.

Oli Johnson and left-back Graham Kelly combined in a superb attack and the latter player rounded keeper Danny Lewis and slotted home, despite the efforts of two covering defenders on the line.

A delighted Bower said: "I thought we played really well against the form team in this league – but we had to work hard.

"We did the basics well and I thought we were intelligent in our play. We made a very good side look average and it could have been a win by a bigger margin, if the truth be known.

"It's a bit disappointing that we didn't add at least a third goal but if you'd offered me a 2-0 victory before the game I would certainly have taken it.

"It was a good game and obviously, from our point of view, we're more than happy with the result."

Boyes had done a sterling job as a lone striker but the left flank, where Johnson and Kelly were operating, was heralded as the main creative spark.

Bower said: "With the chances we created, especially down the left-hand side, we should have had more goals because OJ and Graham were cutting them apart.

"Adam also played well, and took his chance when it came, but it's the defenders doing their jobs well that gives us the chance to get the ball up to the forwards in good positions.

"I think this is one of the best performances in my time here and to win a very tough game that comfortably, I'm very happy with it."