A goal in the last minute of the first half was enough to give league leaders Highmoor Ibis all three points in a scrappy game against Thame United at Palmer Park on Saturday.
In their first league outing in almost a month, Thame made a rusty start as the opening exchanges belonged to the home side as the visitors struggled to get into the game a with Anthony White twice going close.
United gradually settled into the contest and the first effort on goal came on 14 minutes when a Dan Jones free-kick from 20 yards went wide of the near post.
Another free-kick three minutes later, this time from Dan West, hit the wall with the rebound falling to Alex Kedzierski, whose 25-yard effort was well saved.
Shortly afterwards United were forced to make changes as centre back Jon Coverley went down in a strong challenge and was replaced by Ben Connelly, with West reverting to centre back.
This enforced change seemed to affect Thame for the rest of the half, during which the only goal of the game arrived when Richard Witt struck a speculative effort from 40 yards and the ball hit Ellis Hercules and deflected into the path of White, who beat Tapping in the Thame goal.
The second half saw United on the front foot and enjoy the majority of the possession, but they rarely troubled the home goalkeeper and instead it was Highmoor who went closest to scoring next through a 20-yard effort that struck the bar.
United continued to press but were met by a resolute and stubborn defence, as Highmoor held on for the three points.
Thame are fifth in the Hellenic Premier Division and this weekend travel to Brimscombe & Thrupp.