WIMBORNE Town maintained their title charge with a 3-2 victory over a resilient Tavistock at New Cuthbury.

Magpies were forced into taking the lead on three occasions, Tavistock cancelling out Matty Neale and Billy Walker goals through Jacob Bowker and Alex Battle before being unable to respond to Josh Carmichael’s free kick late on.

Boss Tim Sills was forced into making one change to side victorious at Mousehole last time out, Lewis Beale replacing Matty Burrows, who returned to AFC Totton at the end of his loan spell.

The hosts started strongly whilst having a whole host of chances. Jack Lovell headed over, Lewis Beale was denied by Aaron Dearing before Cameron Munn was also thwarted by the Tavistock keeper.

As the game approached the half-hour mark, Wimborne went closer again.

Sam Jackson headed a Matty Neale corner goalwards; the effort blocked on the line and the rebound fired over the bar.

But Wimborne would find their opener 10 minutes before the half-time whistle.

Neale earned possession back high in the Tavistock half, allowing the midfielder to blast past Dearing and open scores.

Despite leading, Magpies were unable to take their lead into the break as Tavistock equalised four minutes later.

Bowker capitalised on a failed clearance of a Tavistock cross to power into the net and restore parity.

Given 15 minutes to stew on giving up their lead during the interval, Wimborne came out and restored their lead two minutes into the second period.

A corner taken short found Oakley Hanger, who whipped the ball into the area for Walker to steer home with a header.

In the ascendency and ahead on the scoresheet, Wimborne looked to stretch their lead further.

Dearing denied Beale twice as the game neared the hour mark.

On sixty-six minutes Magpies had their own keeper to thank, Ross Flitney getting down low quick enough to hold Liam Prynn’s effort before it crossed the line.

Prynn would be involved in Tavistock’s second equaliser on 75 minutes.

The forward surged down the right, before finding Battle inside the Wimborne area.

Battle kept his nerve to tuck home and level scores.

There was still time for Wimborne to take the lead for a third time.

Neale was felled right on the edge of the area after a mazy run towards goal, earning his side a free kick in a dangerous position.

Up stepped Carmichael, who smacked the dead ball into the goal to win his side a crucial three points.

There was still time for further drama. Tavistock’s Endacott went for a slightly early bath for a second yellow, whilst Beale went close to getting on the scoresheet in stoppage time, his effort cleared off the line after he had rounded the keeper.

Magpies: Flitney, Hanger, Walker, Jackson, Scorey, Griffin, Neale, Morgan (Hoey, 90+4), Munn (Carmichael, 68), Beale, Lovell (Baker,78).

Unused subs: Arnold, Cocklin.