AN EIGHTH win in 12 games partnered together, including six clean sheets, the Darragh Lenihan and Derrick Williams partnership is delivering results for Rovers.

Williams grabbed the headlines at Hull City by scoring the only goal of the game and putting in a fine defensive display.

The contribution of Christian Walton also cannot be overlooked, the Rovers ‘keeper making a fine penalty save to deny Jarrod Bowen in the 12th minute.

Boss Tony Mowbray says the decision not to add more central defenders to his squad this summer, with Manchester City loanee Tosin Adarabioyo the sole arrival, was because of the encouraging displays of Lenihan and Williams in the final six games of last season.

And he has seen those signs continue at the start of this season after clean sheets in wins over Middlesbrough and Hull City.

“I think these two players playing at the moment have a rapport, they enjoy each other’s company,” Mowbray said.

“They play for the same international team, have huge respect for each other, their chemistry is that they feel they can say anything to each other and get the job done.

“Sometimes chemistry is really important in a central defensive partnership.

“I think the chemistry of these two is good and it’s not a bad start.

“But there will be tougher tests and days when goals fly in and then it’s about how we react and you have to have it in your belly that you don’t want the ball to hit the back of your net.

“Clean sheets are what you should live for as a central defender in my opinion.”

Unfortunately for Rovers, there will be enforced change in the back four against Cardiff tomorrow, with Greg Cunningham, an impressive performer in his three matches so far, unable to play against his parent club.

That will likely see a return to the side for Amari’i Bell, with Williams set to keep his place in the centre of defence.

Mowbray said he is unlikely to risk Adarabioyo who is close to full return and is delighted with the impact Cunningham has had since joining Rovers on loan from the Bluebirds.

“I think we will probably leave Tosin out, is there any need rush him back particularly with the muscle injury he has had?” said Mowbray. “There is no reason to rush him back let’s give him some time to make sure his muscle strain is resolved and sorted. But we will wait and see.”

“I know our left back wont’ be available, We are a player down but it is not an injury so there might be a bit of tinkering with the squad.”

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Regarding Cunningham, the boss added: “He does what it says on the tin. He can pick the right pass. We are trying to do a lot of work on how we play and patterns of play and Greg is carrying them out and doing the job pretty well.

“I like his personality. I think the Irish connection with Lenihan and Williams fits like a hand in a glove. They all have similar personalities and all get on really well with each other so I am delighted with him.

“He just has to keep working hard, keep trying to improve and get better which I hope he will with his fitness levels, get up to 100 per cent speed.

“He’s back playing games, he hasn’t played for a while so I am delighted for him that he is helping the team get a few results.”

Walton is a new name between the sticks for Rovers, after the departure of David Raya.

Mowbray highlighted his height as a key addition to the backline, and said after the Hull win: “He came and took his crosses which is important because neither Darragh or Derrick is 6’5. They need help at times against big strikers. He came and helped them out and it was a good performance.”