BRACKNELL Town remain second in the Bostik League South Central Division despite losing 1-0 at leaders Hayes & Yeading last Saturday, but now have a tough fight on their hands to finish in the top three, writes Dave Wright.

They have been joined on the 62-point mark by Marlow and Cheshunt. All three look certain to make the play-offs, but the team finishing second or third will have the advantage of playing at home in the semi-finals.

The Robins and Marlow have a game in hand of their closest rivals, so their clash at the Alfred Davis Memorial Ground this Saturday takes on even greater importance.

Town were certainly unlucky to have returned home pointless from Hayes, where the attendance of 416, helped by a good contingent from Bracknell, set a new record at the SKYex Community Stadium.

The fans were treated to a thoroughly entertaining encounter, full of good attacking play between two sides who between them have totalled 200 league goals this season.

There were several missed chances at both ends, while the keepers were in good form.

It was Town's Mark Scott who was involved in the controversial goal that decided the game in the 62nd minute.

Hayes right wing-back Ashley Smith was put through on the right. The goalie dived bravely in his path, but in doing so received a blow to his head. With Scott laying on the ground, Matt Day raced over intending to protect him, but he pushed Smith out of the way. The referee awarded a penalty and Toby Little sent Scott the wrong way from the spot.

Manager Geoff Warner described the penalty award as a "scandalous" decision.

Marlow will go into the game on a high as last Tuesday they defeated Slough Town 1-0 to reach the Berks & Bucks Senior Cup final, where they will play Reading FC Under-23s on Bank Holiday Monday, May 6.

It's been a good week for Ascot United, as they won 4-0 at Royal Wootton Bassett in the Hellenic League and then 4-2 at Brackley Town Saints in the quarter-finals of the Perpetua Press Floodlit Cup on Tuesday.

Harry Laflin, with a brace, Dan Price and Luqman Kassim scored on Saturday.

At Brackley, the Yellamen found themselves 2-0 down after 54 minutes, but the sending off of home keeper Alastair Worby for handling the ball outside his area changed the game.

United, who had crashed 5-1 at the same venue 10 days earlier, scored four times in the final half-hour through Laflin, Sheridan Campbell, Elliot Carey and Kai Walters.

Ascot will meet Binfield at the Racecourse Ground in the semi-finals on a date to be confirmed.

Binfield recovered from the setback of conceding a fifth-minute goal to triumph 2-1 at Fairford Town in their league game last Saturday. Eddie Lee equalised in the 28th minute with Gary Smith bagging the winner just after the hour mark.

With regular keeper David Lyons unavailable, the Moles gave a debut to Lee Wyatt, only to lose him through injury 25 minutes from time.

Defender Liam Gavin took over between the posts and made a great save at the feet of an opposing forward,

Binfield are away to Tuffley Rovers this coming Saturday.

Wokingham & Emmbrook lost 4-1 at Wallingford Town in the quarter-finals of the Reading Senior Cup on Tuesday, their goal coming from a Josh Harris free-kick. They had Joe Cummuskey sent off for a foul when trailing 2-0.

The Sumas return to Division 1 East action this Saturday when they visit AFC Aldermaston, who are second in the table,