John Ward heaped praise on his Bristol Rovers team after watching them pick up a 1-0 victory over Wycombe at the Memorial Stadium.

This victory made it 20 points from nine games under Ward - more than Rovers had achieved in 22 League Two fixtures this season prior to his arrival.

Former Stoke City striker Ryan Brunt scored the only goal of the match with a tame looking volley from Joe Anyinsah's cross, which caught Wycombe goalkeeper Jordan Archer unsighted.

And, while the visitors pushed the home side into some desperate defending at times, that only increased Ward's pride in a win clinched by Brunt's 35th-minute goal.

He said: "My players were throwing bodies in the way of the ball in injury time and I enjoyed seeing that because it showed the spirit we have in the side. We had to dig in and protect our lead, which made it more like an away victory, but that made me all the more delighted with my players.

"I have a settled back-four playing in front of Steve Mildenhall and they protected him magnificently today. But as a team we defended well.

"Ryan Brunt is a 19-year-old who plays as though he is 29. He has now scored twice for me and won a couple of penalties in five appearances, so I'm delighted with him."

Visiting boss Gareth Ainswoth felt his side were unlucky to have two penalty appeals rejected by referee Mick Russell in the second half, with former Rovers striker Jo Kuffour the man sent tumbling on both occasions.

"Jo told me afterwards he thought at least one should have been given, but referees have a difficult job and sometimes decisions don't go your way," said Ainsworth. "For half an hour we were the only team in it and I was delighted with how we were playing but, after Rovers scored, a few mistakes started to creep in.

"We finished the game strongly and might easily have snatched an equaliser in a scramble at the end so overall I'm happy enough with our performance.

"I am a big admirer of John Ward, who is one of football's gentlemen, and he has them well organised and difficult to beat."