SUTTON boss Matt Gray praised his players for bouncing back from their heart-breaking Papa John’s Trophy final defeat by beating Leyton Orient 1-0 at Gander Green Lane.

The U’s suffered heartache at Wembley last week as they lost to League One Rotherham in extra-time.

But Joe Kizzi’s header secured Gray’s side a welcome three points as their attention turns fully to trying to secure a League Two play-off spot.

The vital victory left them within touching distance, two points off the coveted top seven with a game in hand over the majority of their rivals.

Your Local Guardian: Joe Kizzi scored the winning goal against Leyton OrientJoe Kizzi scored the winning goal against Leyton Orient

Gray said: “The players have bounced back really well today and that was the most important thing.

“After the disappointment of last week and how much we put into it and how tired the lads were this week after playing 120 minutes to come straight back into a tough league game I’m really pleased.

“The most important thing especially at this stage of the season, let alone the week we’ve had, was to get three points.

“First half we were outstanding and probably could have put the game out of sight.

“Second half, not that we were hanging on, Orient had a lot of the ball without really hurting us. We saw it out reasonably comfortably and it’s a massive three points.

“They’ve got good players, they are a big club for this division. They had only lost one since Richie (Wellens) had taken over so we knew it was going to be a tough game.

“We’re really pleased to beat a dangerous team. The lads looked dead on their feet so I won’t be moaning at them too much.”

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