Wycombe Wanderers secured a superb victory to beat old rivals and fellow high-flyers Colchester United 3-1 in a pulsating clash at Adams Park

Goals from Adebayo Akinfenwa, Paris Cowan-Hall and Luke O'Nien gave all three points to the Blues before Sammie Szmodics pulled one back late on.

Akinfenwa gave the hosts the lead on 13 minutes with his 14th goal of the season when he thumped a header past Sam Walker from Craig Mackail-Smith's wonderful cross.

Cowan-Hall made it two on 24 minutes when his deflected shot bobbled into the corner after more excellent work by Mackail-Smith.

O'Nien then scored one of the goals of the season on 74 minutes when he laced an exocet past a stranded Walker from 25 yards into the far corner.

Szmodics, well shackled by O'Nien all afternoon, evaded him once and stroked home a delightful shot into the bottom corner on 77 minutes past Scott Brown.

Colchester had the first opportunity on six minutes when Tom Eastman’s superb cross from the right found Mikael Mandron, who saw his header brilliantly saved by Brown.

Wanderers had a half chance on 10 minutes when Cowan-Hall found Matt Bloomfield with a flicked header but the club captain blazed his shot over.

Sam Saunders had a free-kick two minutes later after Cowan-Hall was fouled by Ryan Jackson but his effort was easily held by Walker.

However, on 13 minutes, Akinfenwa gave the Blues the lead with a trademark header before Ryan Inniss almost equalised on 16 minutes but Brown tipped his effort away.

Wanderers’ front three were causing untold problems for the U’s defence and the home side grabbed a deserved second through Cowan-Hall.

The Chairboys were looking fairly comfortable now and Nathan McGinley and Tafari Moore were having superb debuts in defence.

Szmodics had a glimpse of goal on 39 minutes but snatched his shot well wide when well placed in the box.

Bloomfield almost got a third for the Blues just before half-time when his cross was looping in but Walker managed to scoop it clear with the help of the crossbar.

The Blues started the second half in assured fashion once again and Colchester were struggling to break past an organised Wycombe rearguard.

Drey Wright had a crack for the visitors on 53 minutes from 25 yards but bulleted his strike into the advertising hoardings.

Akinfenwa had an audacious effort at goal on 63 minutes to try and make it three but Walker was equal to it.

Mandron nearly pulled one back for Colchester on 68 minutes when his thunderous shot was incredibly tipped around the post by the superb Brown.

Walker matched his counterpart when he clawed away Saunders’ rocket on 72 minutes before denying Nathan Tyson from close range.

Moore then almost capped a debut to remember when he skinned three Colchester players on 73 minutes but Walker denied him with a magnificent save.

However, the Colchester stopper had absolutely no chance with O'Nien's rocket befoere Szmodics scored a late consolation.

Wanderers saw out the game comfortably and keep their promotion challenge motoring on.

WYCOMBE WANDERERS: Brown, Moore, McGinley, Scarr, Jacobson, O’Nien, Saunders, Bloomfield, Cowan-Hall (sub: Tyson, 69), Akinfenwa, Mackail-Smith. Subs: Ma-Kalambay, Gape, Bean, Kashket.

COLCHESTER UNITED: Walker, Kent, Inniss, Eastman, Jackson, Comley, Murray, Szmodics, Wright, Mandron, Guthrie. Subs: Gilmartin, Prosser, Kpekawa, Lapslie, Loft, Senior, Hanlan.

REFEREE: John Busby