Danny Webber claimed his fourth goal of the campaign as his solitary strike
earned Watford the victory over Rotherham, despite the heroics of the visitors'
stand-in goalkeeper Gary Montgomery.
The Millers goalkeeper, in for the suspended Mike Pollitt, pulled off a string
of fine saves to deny Watford throughout the opening period, before he was
finally beaten by Webber on 47 minutes.
The win moves the Hornets further away from the drop zone, but leaves
Rotherham languishing in the bottom three.
Early on it was Watford's Lenny Pidgeley who was the busier of the two keepers.
He watched a long-range effort from Paul Warne flash narrowly wide, but was then forced to hang on to a Richie Barker header on eight minutes.
Watford got into their stride with Scottish international Paul Devlin starting to see plenty of the ball out wide as he delivered a couple of dangerous crosses.
Devlin then unleashed a shot from 25 yards, but his effort cannoned off Martin McIntosh.
The Rotherham defender was in the right place at the right time as he blocked a fierce shot from the edge of the box from Scott Fitzgerald which deflected for a corner.
Jamie Hand came desperately close to making the breakthrough on 28 minutes, but his clever lob from just inside the box was pushed away by a fully-extended Montgomery.
Soon after the restart, Webber struck to give Watford the lead.
After good work out wide by Neil Ardley, the ball fell to Webber and
Montgomery was powerless to stop his drilled effort from close range.
The Hornets could have put the game out of sight had it not been for Montgomery as he tipped Ardley's fine effort over the bar and then denied Webber.
Rotherham could have hit back on the break. Carl Robinson's cross out wide
found Barker and his sweetly-struck shot was brilliantly saved by Pidgeley to
keep his side in front.
Paolo Vernazza and Fitzgerald again went close as Watford looked for that
killer goal, but they were almost denied all three points when substitute John
Mullin's half-volley crept narrowly wide late on.
Watford: Pidgeley, Kelly, Cox, Gayle, Brown, Hand, Ardley,
Vernazza, Webber, Fitzgerald, Devlin. Subs: Chamberlain, Dyche,
Dyer, Cook, Smith.
Rotherham: Montgomery, Shaun Barker, Baudet, McIntosh, Hurst,
Sedgwick, Talbot, Robinson, Warne, Byfield, Richard Barker.
Subs: Butler, Minto, Mullin, Monkhouse, Robins.
Referee: B Curson (Leicestershire).