CIRENCESTER Town kept their slender play-off hopes alive on Saturday as they strolled past relegation-threatened Kempston Rovers 3-1.

The victory sees them move to within four points of the play-off places with six games left in the 2023/24 Southern League Division One Central campaign.

The game started at a high tempo with neither side able to produce an end product but as the interval approached, a change of formation for Cirencester brought about the opening they craved.

Nick Peare launched the ball across the pitch to Harry Burns and his cross into the box found Reegan Messenger, who blocked an attempted clearance for the ball to rebound into the net from close range.

Cirencester then added a second in quick succession when Peare headed home at the second attempt from a Joe Turley corner kick.

A few minutes into the second half, Burns struck a post with a curling effort from 20 yards but the home side responded and pressed Cirencester, forcing them to defend deep.

But, as the game was drawing to a close, a defensive mix-up resulted in Aidan Bennett being provided with the chance to finish into an empty net, and he took it to seal the points.

Malachi Soile did grab a consolation for the hosts with a bullet header from a corner kick, but it was too little, too late for them to rescue a result.

That leaves them a place above the relegation zone, but they have played three games more than second-bottom Kidlington, who are just a point behind them.