TOWN left it late at the New Lawn as skipper Olly Lancashire and veteran Matt Taylor delivered the killer blows in a largely uninspiring first league meeting with Forest Green Rovers.

The experienced duo struck in the final five minutes to hand David Flitcroft his first back-to-back league wins since taking charge at the County Ground.

The game seemed certainly to be petering out into a drab goalless draw as the 85th minute ticked around but substitute Taylor made one and scored the other to ensure Town’s fine record away from home continued.

The former Premier League ace first whipped in the corner that allowed Lancashire to chest the ball across the line from close range before firing an excellent effort into the far corner to make it 12 points from 15 on the road for Flitcroft’s men.

The Town manager made one enforced change to his line-up from the XI that had downed Stevenage 3-2 at the County Ground six days earlier, with Chris Robertson stepping into the heart of the defence to replace the unfortunate knee cruciate ligament injury victim Dion Conroy.

On the bench, West Ham youngster Kyle Knoyle earned a place as did Donal McDermott, who was returning from a three-match suspension.

Rovers included County Ground alumni Drissa Traore and Will Randall in their starting XI, while Isiah Osbourne, signed on loan earlier in the day, took a place on the bench.

But it was the visitors who made the encouraging start in the opening five minutes, Paul Mullin’s low ball in from the left ending in a tangle of legs involving Luke Norris at the far post before Chris Hussey whipped an inviting free kick in from the left which eluded everyone.

Rovers offered little in the opening 10 minutes save for midfielder Liam Noble latching on to a loose bouncing ball in the area, but heading tamely at Lawrence Vigouroux.

And Town probably should have found the net on 11 minutes as Hussey took a corner he had won on the left and the flag kick sailed all the way to an unmarked Luke Norris at the far post, but the big striker’s fierce effort was deflected into the side netting.

The home side were slowly growing into the game as Noble pulled the strings while top scorer Christian Doidge and Toni Gomes started to make their presence felt and a neatly worked miss-move from a corner resulted in Charlie Cooper miscuing his effort from 15 yards.

Town had dropped off a little after their start but Timi Elsnik’s curling through ball almost found Norris, only for Lee Collins to get a vital clearance in.

Just before the half hour, Mullin picked up the ball 30 yards out and attempted a curler into the far corner but it had just too much elevation and was slightly wide of Bradley Collins’ upright.

Former Town man Drissa Traore was probably among the more influential figures in the opening 40 minutes, his tenacity leading to a hard-earned corner that Noble knocked in but Mark Roberts got rather underneath the ball and Vigouroux was untroubled.

Yet Town had two more second gilt-edged opportunities as Mullin arrived at the far post but saw his goal-bound effort blocked by Roberts, then Gordon flashed a shot wide with the aid of a deflection.

Elsnik was also off target with a 25-yarder as the half entered its final five minutes and Randall provided some brief excitement with a long-range run but in truth the opening period had been pretty poor fare.

Rovers had the first opportunity after the break as Randall was checked by Lancashire and Noble’s free kick bounced around before Gomes fired straight at Vigouroux.

But Town really should have been in front on 50 minutes as Norris sprung the offside trap and latched on to Elsnik’s through pass only to fire straight at Collins. Anderson’s follow-up was smothered by the keeper at the second attempt.

As the game began to open up, Randall outmuscled Ben Purkiss at the other end to send a low cross in but nobody was on hand to finish before Rovers lost right-back Dale Bennett to an injury, with Alex Iacovitti coming on.

Lancashire soon went into the book as he was exposed by the charging Randall, handing Rovers a free kick 20 yards out but Noble curled his effort a yard or two too high.

But Norris had his third makeable chance of the match immediately as Collins was caught out in midfield and the frontman advanced, but sent his shot wide from 15 yards. Hussey then broke into the area on the left but his cross was too high for everyone.

Flitcroft summoned Kaiyne Woolery from the bench in place of Kellan Gordon, while Rovers removed Gomes for Omar Bugiel and, surprisingly, the largely excellent Traore for new recruit Osbourne as the game lost its momentum again.

Anderson won a free kick 30 yards out but, perhaps in keeping with the rest of the evening, Hussey’s effort was miles over the top and he subsequently hobbled off to be replaced by Matty Taylor, shortly before Norris made way for Harry Smith.

The game appeared to be petering out as Anderson got on the end of a ball in the area but saw his effort blocked behind before Town seized their moment from the corner.

Taylor sent in the delivery from the right and the Rovers defence gave a passable impression of statues as Lancashire arrived at the far post to divert the ball into the net.

Rovers looked for a way back from a free kick but it only allowed Town to break and although the hosts slowed the momentum, when Mullin laid the ball back to Taylor, he advanced and arrowed a precise drive beyond Collins into the far corner to wrap up the points.

Rovers were broken and a couple of late efforts that failed to cause Vigouroux any problems smacked as much of desperation as anything else.

TOWN: Lawrence Vigouroux, Ben Purkiss, Olly Lancashire, Chris Robertson, Chris Hussey (Matt Taylor 77), Kellan Gordon (Kaiyne Woolery 62), James Dunne, Timi Elsnik, Paul Mullin, Keshi Anderson, Luke Norris (Harry Smith 81(

Not used: Reice Charles-Cook, Amine Linganzi, Donal McDermottt, Kyle Knoyle.

Attendance: 3,305 (804)