After a fine start, some excellent football and Deano's headed goal in the first half, Rovers pushed on and on after the break and caused some anxious moments.
But we defended superbly to hold onto the lead and after the disappointments of Christmas and the last-second equaliser at Aston Villa three days earlier, Deano was particularly pleased to come away with maximum points.
"It's been a testing period," said the big defender. "It's tough when you are at 100 per cent but a few of the boys have had a virus that has been going around the camp.
"I had it, struggled out there a bit and it really takes it out of you.
"That's why we had to dig deep today and we're all pleased to come away with the three points.
"It was important to win. We've had four games in 10 days, it's been a tiring spell and the lads did well to win.
"It wasn't the prettiest of games, we grounded it out but we'll get games like that where we'll have to battle, work out and grind out the win.
"These things level themselves out though and perhaps we were due one.
"I didn't think we deserved to lose here against Ipswich or at Southampton and we deserved the three points at Villa on Saturday. It's nice to get the breaks this time and the points."
There will be no respite for Deano and his team-mates with another three games in a week - including the FA Cup and huge Worthington Cup semi-final - starting at Coventry City on Saturday.
He added: "Games are coming thick and fast, midweek games coming up and it will be a difficult period.
"It will test the squad and the gaffer called us together before the Christmas period and said he will used the full squad and that will be the case."
Dean Richards revealed that he and a number of his team-mates had been suffering from a virus after kicking off 2002 with a gritty 1-0 win against Blackburn Rovers.