As important as the win was in terms of Slough’s playoff ambitions, Rebels fans will also be glad to have finally beaten their Buckinghamshire neighbours for the first time in the league since being reunited at this level of football in recent seasons.
It was Slough who attacked from the off, and were rewarded after just eight minutes of play as former Burnham man Stuart Swift thundered in an unstoppable swerving free kick from 20 yards out, the ball hurtling through a crowded penalty area and nestling in Sam Mazurek’s bottom corner.
Slough then began to dominate, and just five minutes later were rewarded with a second. This time, another of the ex-Burnham contingent, Paul Coyne, swung over a free kick from the left which Sean Sonner rose highest to connect with, beating Mazurek to the ball in the process and heading home.
The visitors were finding space and time in midfield to control the game, and looked to play at a quick tempo and find a killer third goal. Steve Sinclair strode forward and almost got lucky with a pot-shot at goal which looked to have squirmed past Mazurek, but the keeper recovered to gather the ball.
But Burnham were not out of the contest and threatened next with Bullivant forced to tip a Ryan Bird header over the bar, with another header being well blocked from the resulting corner - whilst Lewis Cook should have done better than head well over unchallenged at the far post.
Whilst in control of the game, the final pass from Slough seemed to be just lacking, but Danny Burnell found a perfect pass to play in Shaun Byrne – however the midfielder’s touch was too heavy, taking the ball away from him and allowing Mazurek to smother.
Then Burnell himself should have netted when Sinclair slipped him in on goal, but Mazurek blocked, and Burnell poked the rebound off target.
As half-time approached, the game had settled down after its frenetic start, and Bullivant was called upon rarely, but did have to be alert to make a good low save, holding a fierce Togwell volley from the edge of the box.
With Slough looking very comfortable in the second half and happy to keep the ball and invite Burnham onto them when it was lost, chances were few and far between as the hosts looked devoid of ideas. Sonner headed a Coyne cross wide in a rare attack, but Byrne went closer still, almost added a spectacular third as he let Coyne’s clipped ball drop over his right shoulder before volleying onto the roof of the net.
In truth, the early goals proved too much for Burnham and this was a comfortable win against a lacklustre Blues side also featuring former Slough man Craig O’Connor, who along with strike partner Ryan Bird, were marshalled superbly well by Chris Seeby and the vocal stand-in captain Dave Woozley at the heart of Slough’s defence, allowing Rob Bullivant to claim a first clean sheet since arriving at the club.
Slough now turn their attention to stiffer tests ahead, with a trip to title contenders Daventry Town, who recorded a seventeenth straight league victory against fellow playoff contenders Rugby, coming up on Tuesday evening.
Burnham Line up
Mazurek, Pattison, Chandiram, Tilbury, Chemlal, Sear, Parsons (Woodward), Togwell, Bird, O'Connor (Collins), Cook (Thompson). Subs not used: Gladwin, Ochua.