Match ends, Cheltenham Town 3, Port Vale 2.
League Two leaders Cheltenham Town survived a late rally to see out victory over Port Vale, having led 3-0 seven minutes from time.
The Robins were seemingly coasting after strikes from Alfie May, Liam Sercombe and a Scott Brown own goal before Vale hit back through Will Swan and Alex Hurst - but the visitors could not find an equaliser.
A mix-up between Vale keeper Brown and defender Zak Mills saw May nip in between and net from Matt Blair's hopeful nudge forward in the 15th minute.
The lead was doubled in the 18th minute when Chris Hussey's swinging cross from the left was kept alive by Blair for May to thunder against the underside of the bar, against the back of Brown's arm and into the net.
The rest of the game was scrappy and seemed over when Cheltenham substitute Sercombe's half-volley into the ground crept into the top corner via a kiss off the underside of the bar in the 76th minute.
Vale substitute Swan threw the cat amongst the pigeons by netting at the second attempt, following up on a fine point-blank stop by Cheltenham keeper Josh Griffiths with seven minutes to go.
The gap was cut to one goal when Swan centred from the left for Theo Robinson to draw another point-blank save from Griffiths, only for Hurst to tuck into the gaping net in the 85th minute.
But Cheltenham survived seven minutes of added time, with Griffiths tipping wide a daisy cutter from Luke Joyce.
Match report supplied by PA Media.
- 18AzazSubstituted forSercombeat 62'minutes
- 9SmithSubstituted forWilliamsat 80'minutes
- 10MaySubstituted forVassilevat 80'minutes
- 3CrookesBooked at 74mins
- 17TaylorSubstituted forRobinsonat 68'minutes
- 14GuthrieBooked at 65minsSubstituted forSwanat 68'minutes
- Robert Lewis
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Cheltenham Town 3, Port Vale 2.
Matty Blair (Cheltenham Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Zak Mills (Port Vale).
Corner, Port Vale. Conceded by Joshua Griffiths.
Attempt saved. Luke Joyce (Port Vale) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Devante Rodney.
Foul by Callum Wright (Cheltenham Town).
Devante Rodney (Port Vale) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Offside, Port Vale. Leon Legge tries a through ball, but Devante Rodney is caught offside.
Goal! Cheltenham Town 3, Port Vale 2. Alex Hurst (Port Vale) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the high centre of the goal.
Attempt saved. Theo Robinson (Port Vale) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Will Swan.
Goal! Cheltenham Town 3, Port Vale 1. Will Swan (Port Vale) right footed shot from the left side of the six yard box to the bottom left corner.
Attempt saved. Will Swan (Port Vale) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Theo Robinson.
Attempt missed. Andy Williams (Cheltenham Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Sean Long with a headed pass following a corner.
Corner, Cheltenham Town. Conceded by Leon Legge.
Substitution, Cheltenham Town. Indiana Vassilev replaces Alfie May.
Substitution, Cheltenham Town. Andy Williams replaces Sam Smith.
Foul by Alfie May (Cheltenham Town).
Tom Conlon (Port Vale) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Goal! Cheltenham Town 3, Port Vale 0. Liam Sercombe (Cheltenham Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the top left corner. Assisted by Ben Tozer with a headed pass following a corner.