Below par Boreham Wood failed to build on Tuesday’s win at Torquay United and were instead condemned to their their fifth home defeat in seven National League games thanks to an 11th minute penalty against Altrincham.

A clumsy tackle inside the penalty area after ten minutes from Wood’s Clovis Kamdjo gifted the visitors an early lead, Michael Rankine scoring what proved the decisive goal from 12 yards.

Wood lacked pace, with the visitors defending resolutely, smothering any signs of constructive build-up play and ultimately delivering a perfect away performance.

Victory allows the Robins to open up a four-point gap on Ian Allinson's side, who somehow still sit one place above the drop zone.

Altrincham started the brighter of the two sides, yet before any action of note had taken place, Ryan Crowther had his heels clipped by Kamdjo whilst running away from goal and Wood were a goal behind as Rankine successfully scored – the first time Altrincham have scored a penalty since the 2013/14 season.

There were high hopes of a turnaround in Wood’s fortunes after Tuesday night’s 2-1 win at Torquay, yet hero on the night Mustafa Tiryaki lacked the pace of midweek, his groin strain forcing Allinson to replace him after the interval.

Ricky Shakes had a low shot saved by Timothy Deasy before Callum Reynolds headed over from a Luke Howell free-kick.

More half chances came and went for Wood who could not pierce the Robins defence’ from a succession of corners.

Shakes had the best chance of the first half for Wood when a Graeme Montgomery cross from the right deflected onto his boot. The finish came off a defender for a corner, which the Altrincham defence dealt with.

With men behind the ball and a flooded midfield the visitors stifled any hopes Wood had until Allinson changed the shape of his side for the start of the second half.

Tiryaki made way for Junior Morias whilst Howell was sacrificed for Zane Banton. Expectations rose around the ground when the pair combined to win an early corner, but the end product was poor.

Jake Moult then saw his long range effort gathered at the second attempt by James Russell who was called more into action as the game opened up.

He saved a low effort from Rankine before Scott Doe had a header saved by Deasy at the other end from a Montgomery cross.

It was the visitors who looked the likelier to score at this stage. Rankine sent a looping header over Russell with Wood saved by the crossbar. The rebound fell for Crowther, whose effort was blocked by Ben Nunn.

Morias was desperately unlucky not to get his name on the scoresheet by the end of the afternoon.

His first close call came from a deceptive dipping drive that had the beating of Deasy but was just too high.

And soon after he went close again. A superb turn by Shakes on the right wing led to a cross that Montgomery rifled back in from the left. Morias stuck out a leg with his effort going just over.

Wood stopper Russell was then called upon to make a stunning double save to deny the visitors. First he plucked a Damien Reeves cross from underneath the crossbar before recovering to smother Jordan Sinnott's follow-up.

The fresh legs up front of George Bowerman almost had an immediate impact for Altrincham. Reeves held off Doe before playing his fellow substitute through who saw his low shot smothered by Russell.

In stoppage time Wood had one final attempt to no avail.

Moving the ball quickly Montgomery, Shakes and Billy Clifford all had a hand in the buildup, working the ball to Morias whose angled drive from the left curled beyond Deasy only to crash against the right hand post, with Sam Cox unable to keep his header down from the rebound.

Speaking afterwards, Allinson said: “We spoke about not letting them get in front at length before the game. We lasted ten minutes and gave away a stupid, needless penalty.

“We were below par in their penalty area and really did not give their keeper too much to think about. We did not hold the ball up at all today, unlike at Torquay.

“All credit to Altrincham, we played into their hands and they took it and made us work really hard. It is a bit of a blow as I really thought we had turned a corner on Tuesday night.”

Boreham Wood: Russell: Nunn; (B.Clifford 65), Devera, Doe, Reynolds; Shakes, Cox, Kamdjo, Howell (Banton 46), Montgomery: Tiryaki (Morias 46).

Subs not used: Whichelow, C.Clifford.