Second-placed Walton and Hersham started brightly with their lively wingers Athan Smith-Joseph and Malachi Thomas looking to get at Sutton Common Rovers from the off, writes Gary Brigden.

In the opening exchanges good work by Howard Newton set up Athan Smith-Joseph, but he was denied by a tremendous block by Owen Davies. Rovers then had a scare when Smith-Joseph fed Thomas who look to have been fouled in the area, but stayed on his feet and the chance went begging.

Having weathered the bright start by Walton, Rovers grew into the game, and took the lead on 15 minutes. Matt Tanton was pulled down by Thomas, Davies delivered the ball, Asa Rixon headed back across goal, and Richards took advantage of a mistake by Julian Hornby to fire beyond Brendan Norris for 1-0.

Walton almost hit back immediately when a long ball over the top found Flo Bojaj, but the striker was denied by Michael Eacott who was quickly off his line.

It was almost 2-0 on 21 minutes when Richards forced Sullivan into a mistake, Daryl Cooper-Smith picked up the loose ball and saw his shot fumbled by Norris, Richards reacted quickest and squared to Cooper-Smith and he was denied by a superb last gasp challenge by Sullivan.

Rovers were almost caught out three minutes later when they failed to make the most of a corner, and allowed Walton to break, Jamil Okai delivered into the area, and Davies did well to clear, and then repeated the process from the second ball and Rovers cleared the danger completely.

The home side increased their lead on 28 minutes, when Sullivan gifted the ball to Ferdinando, he beat a couple before drilling low beyond Norris for 2-0.

Manager Darren Salmon had to make a change though, replacing the injured Cooper-Smith with Andrew White.

Ten minutes from the break and Walton were almost back in the game, Bojaj did well and fed Smith-Joseph, his deep cross found Thomas but he could only direct his volley wide.

On 37 minutes a decent delivery by Thomas almost found Bojaj, but again Davies defended superbly and cleared the ball.

Walton continued to put us under pressure as they look for that way back into the game, but despite a fair amount of possession in and around the Rovers area, they were unable to force any clear cut chances.

Matt Farrell found his way into the book for a foul on Jim Fenlon on the stroke of half time, and Sutton went in at the break with a healthy 2-0 lead.

Salmon was forced into making another change at the start of the second half, with Richards going off injured, and being replaced by Liam Holden. Walton also made a change at the break with Thomas and Okai off and TJ Nkoma and Elliott Simpson coming on.

Rovers almost increased our lead immeiately in the second half, Matt Auletta and Jeff Addo-Dankwa linked up superbly with Auletta's cross finding White, and his low shot struck the base of the right hand post with Ferdinando being denied by a great save by Norris from the rebound.

At the other end and Smith-Joseph got beyond Addo-Dankwa but was stopped in his tracks by skipper Aaron Bogle.

Sutton went close again on 52 minutes with a move involving Farrell, Ferdinando, Holden and Auletta and ending with a Ferdinando shot going over the bar. A couple of minutes later and White dragged an effort wide of the right hand post.

It was 3-0 on 57 minutes when Ferdinando and Holden linked up superbly and Ferdinando's low cross was flicked home by White, which signalled a goal rush for SCR.

Two minutes later and it was 4-0, a ball into the area was headed back across goal, half cleared by Fenlon and Ferdinando launched himself with a diving header for his second of the game.

Scoring was completed on 65 minutes, when a great ball into the area by Addo-Dankwa was guided home by Rixon.

SCR made their final change on 76 minutes with man of the match, the outstanding Matt Ferdinando being replaced by a very welcome sight, with the return of Joe Mead, after a long injury lay-off.

On Monday night, Sutton Common Rovers bowed out of the Surrey Senior Cup going down to a 5-4 penalty shoot out defeat against Epsom & Ewell, after a goalless draw.

Darren Salmon made ten changes from the side that had beaten Walton & Hersham at the weekend with a debut for 16-year-old winger Alfie Carney and a first appearance in three years for Casey McCabe.

In truth it was a disappointing game, with very little to trouble either keeper, although for SCR the recalled Ollie Ellaway had made a couple of decent saves when one on one.

It was apparent from early on that penalties would be the outcome, and Epsom converted all of theirs superbly, whilst for SCR Anson Cousins saw his well saved, and the visitors progressed.

Rovers are currently fourth in the Combined Counties League Premier Division. They visit 16th-placed Fanham Town this Saturday, 3pm.