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Tuesday, 18 February, 2003, 18:14 GMT
Luton 3-2 Northampton

Two goals from Paul Hughes and a scorching free-kick from skipper Kevin Nicholls gave Luton a victory over Northampton in a pulsating derby encounter.

Northampton took the lead through Daryl Burgess' header midway through the first half, only for Hughes to volley the equaliser two minutes later.

Both teams made a significant contribution to the second half and Nicholls' free-kick was cancelled out by Richard Johnson's penalty after 71 minutes.

And just when the game seemed to be heading for a draw Hughes fired the winner low into the bottom corner.

The result might have been different had Luton striker Tony Thorpe not wasted so many chances.

He headed over when unmarked and twice tried unsuccessfully to take the ball round visiting goalkeeper Glyn Thompson.

The Northampton stopper also denied Dean Crowe, while at the other end Carl Emberson held a fierce drive from Johnson.


Luton: Emberson, Coyne, Willmott, Neilson, Boyce, Spring, Nicholls, Hughes, Brkovic, Thorpe, Crowe. Subs: Holmes, Hillier, Kimble, Brill, Leary.

Northampton: Thompson, Burgess, Reid, Carruthers, Gill, McGregor, Trollope, Rahim, Asamoah, Johnson, Stamp. Subs: Marsh, Sampson, Harsley, Abbey, Lincoln.

Referee: K Hill (Hertfordshire).

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Northampton boss Terry Fenwick
"I was disappointed with our performance"

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