Charlie Austin's 16th goal of the season left Swindon in the promotion hunt and just two points off second spot after a routine 1-0 win at Hartlepool.
The defeat, their seventh at home this season, leaves Pools sweating on their League One future while their former manager Danny Wilson enjoyed his return to the club where he was sacked in December 2008.
The home side had the first chance just two minutes in when Roy O'Donovan held off two defenders to fire into the side netting.
Austin struck in the 22nd minute when, with his back to goal, he held off Sam Collins and Antony Sweeney to turn and crack low past Scott Flinders.
Sweeney went closest for Pools, cracking against the crossbar from 12 yards after 40 minutes and a minute later James Brown had a shot on goal from a tight angle.
Swindon, however, were always comfortable for their lead and rarely troubled by a poor Pools side.
O'Donovan, Sweeney and substitute Adam Boyd poked efforts at keeper David Lucas, but he was rarely troubled until he pushed a Brown chance out in injury time.
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