Derry City closed the gap on leaders Sligo Rovers to just two points following their hard fought 2-1 win over Shamrock Rovers.
The win, which was Derry’s sixth win in a row, came courtesy of Barry McNamee and Ryan McBride second half goals.
Rovers who netted in the closing stages through Stephen Rice were unlucky not to leave Brandywell with a share of the spoils.
A Rory Patterson 25 yard free-kick flash low across the ground but was easily gathered by Rovers keeper Barry Murphy.
Rovers started the game the better but their final ball in the last third let them down on a few occasions.
Trevor Croly’s side went close to taking the lead on 33 minutes following a cleverly worked free-kick.
Sean O’Connor rolled the ball to Ronan Finn but the midfielder’s long range strike, which moved quite a bit in the air was kept out by a full stretched Doherty and fortunately for the City keeper McCaffrey cleared the loose ball, before either Karl Sheppard or Ciaran Kilduff could capitalise.
Derry broke the deadlock on 51 minutes when Patrick McEleney’s cross found McNamee at the back post and he headed home his third goal in as many games in somewhat fortunate circumstances, when it looked as though he was trying to find an unmarked Molloy.
Rovers started to up the ante after following a goal behind but Karl Sheppard headed wide when well placed.
A Gary McCabe corner was flicked on at the near post by Billy Dennehy and Doherty did well to punch the ball away from virtually on his goal line.
The home side doubled their lead on 80 minutes in super fashion when McNamee’s tremendous cross found man of the match Ryan McBride who threw himself at the back and headed home his third goal of the campaign.
In the closing stages the visitors went close to pulling one back but Karl Sheppard’s close range shot was superbly kept out by the alert Doherty and McBride booted the loose ball of the line.
Right at the death Rovers did manage to score when substitute Stephen Rice saw his pile driver from the edge of the box flash into Doherty’s bottom right hand corner.
Derry City: Doherty, Madden, McBride, McCaffrey, Crawley (Curran 86); Higgins, Molloy, B McNamee; Rafter (Duffy 74); Patterson, Kavanagh (McEleney 8).
Shamrock Rovers: Murphy, Sullivan, Elebert, Foran, Powell; O’Connor (McCabe 59), Chambers, Finn, Dennehy; Kilduff (Quigley 65); Sheppard.
Referee: Mr Derek Tomney (Dublin).