Dover qualified for the Skrill South play-offs in dramatic fashion on Saturday as Barry Cogan’s late penalty set up a two-legged semi-final Sutton United.
With Havant & Waterlooville failing to beat already-relegated Tonbridge, Cogan’s 85th-minute spot kick meant Whites snatched the fifth-place play-off spot and consigned Hayes & Yeading to relegation at the same time.
Dover made the perfect start when Nathan Elder headed home Moses Ademola’s third-minute cross and they dominated the opening stages, with Cogan striking the woodwork from a free-kick before Hayes equalised through a Niall McManus header from their first real attack on 23 minutes.
After an eventful first half chances were few and far between in the opening quarter of the second half, but the game came to life again in the closing 20 minutes and Dover secured the three points they needed when Cogan converted from the spot after Adam Everitt handled substitute Jeff Goulding’s drive.
Dover now face runners-up Sutton in the play-off semi-finals with the first leg at Crabble on Wednesday before Whites travel to Gander Green Lane for the second leg on Saturday.