Substitute Dominic Lawless scored a second-half clincher as Banbury got back to winning ways with a narrow 3-2 victory against their in-form visitors at Spencer Stadium on Saturday.

But they did it the hard way, twice squandering the lead before finally securing the three points which lifted Edwin Stein’s side to eighth in the Calor League Premier Division table.

Early on, Banbury had to withstand severe Arlesey pressure before they took the lead just past the half-hour.

Leon Simpson’s well-struck shot from Aaron Morgan’s pass was blocked on the line, but Adeyinka Talabi gleefully tucked in the rebound.

However, a mistake from home keeper Kwame Fordah allowed former Banbury striker Joseph N’Guessan to tap home and equalise two minutes later.

Eight minutes into the second half, Banbury restored their lead.

Lawless fastened onto a Simpson pass before setting up Nic Evangelinos whose shot from just inside the penalty area hit a defender before going over a helpless Jack Bonham into the far corner of the net.

Once again, Banbury were rocked when Arlesey levelled and it was down to another Fordah error.

The keeper failed to hold onto a cross from former Fulham and Bristol Rov-ers striker Barry Hayles and Christian Tavernier headed in.

However, Fordah redeemed himself by denying Luis Medina from close-range.

Defender Marvin Martin headed an N’Guessan shot off the line as Arlesey turned up the pressure on the hosts.

Ironically, it was an error from Fordah’s opposite number, Bonham, that saw Banbury snatch the winner. The visitors’ keeper failed to keep out a low shot from Evangelinos, and Lawless had an easy tap in from two yards.

Banbury could have added to their tally, with Bonham denying substitute Lawless as the hosts finished strongly.

Banbury Utd: Fordah, Cray, Martin, McNulty, Mbamarah, Ryan, Evang-elinos, Green (Pinto 71), Simpson, Morgan, Talabi (Lawless H-T). Subs not used: Balal, A Dumbleton, Hackett.

Attendance: 255.