THANKS to a late Ty Belford save, Swindon Town’s unbeaten run moved into its eighth week at a critical point in the race for a play-off spot.

After failing a late fitness test, ever-present on-loan number one Lawrence Vigouroux had to sit out last Saturday’s 0-0 draw against fellow play-off hopefuls Coventry City, handing Belford his fourth start of the season.

The career of a substitute goalkeeper is a strange one, knowing for the majority of season you will be watching from the sidelines, hoping the man in your way of the number one shirt will find some misfortune to hand you a chance you can’t mess up.

My first memory of two goalkeepers battling it out for the gloves was Fraser Digby and Nicky Hammond during the 1990s, with Hammond strangely being picked over Digby on far too many occasions. In the end, Digby won the battle.

Thankfully, Belford took his chance and rare opportunity at the Ricoh Arena to plead his case for the number one shirt in superb fashion.

When Ty moved to Wiltshire in 2013 he had an almost impossible job removing one of the best keepers seen at Swindon since the days of Digby - Wes Foderingham was never going to lose his spot.

But when he moved on, many thought it could be Belford’s chance to step-up.

With the arrival of Vigouroux it should have been be a tight contest over the opening months to see who would win the fight to become number one, but Ty was never given the chance to put his case forward and despite only having a decent season, Lawrence has never looked like losing his spot.

But after his confident and assured performance last weekend, it would be harsh to move Ty back to the bench, even if the Liverpool loanee is fully fit.

Hopefully Luke Williams will stick with Belford for tomorrow’s Good Friday televised game against promotion hopefuls Wigan Athletic.

Follow me on Twitter @danwjonson

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