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Hamworthy Utd 2 Merthyr Town 0

Small matter of an FA Cup replay last night.....here's the match report:


Emirates FA Cup First Qualifying Round (Replay) Tuesday 7th September 2021

Well documented events caused this tie to be hastily switched away from the County Ground to the New Cuthbury Wimborne. However, Hamworthy's main focus on the night was to overcome their more senior and illustrious opponents, and continue their interest in this famous competition. Tim Sills made just two changes to the side that on Saturday had pulled out all the stops late on, and clung onto a hard-earned draw in their first encounter in Wales.

It was the Town who created the early chances. After only a few minutes, Shane Murphy was diving to his right to hold into a well struck 20-yard free kick by Kerry Morgan. A short while later a 30- yard volley by Matthew Harris sailed just wide of the corner of the stanchion. A superbly timed tackle by Billy Walker then thwarted Connor Davies' jinxing run into the penalty area. Although the Hammers had been able to create a couple of half chances, it was certainly the Martyrs, working the long ball, who looked the more likely to break the deadlock at that point. As on Saturday, however, United's defence was well organized and continually managed to outjump the Town frontmen. United's best chance to date came on the half hour mark. Max Wilcock had muscled his way past a couple of defenders, before laying the ball onto Matty Neale who in turn was cynically felled on the edge of the penalty area. However, Steve Devlin's resultant free kick was always curling away from the far post. A few minutes later a smart run by Wilcock ended with him unfortunately poking the ball straight at Merthyr keeper Steve Cann. In the latter stages of the half, as the game heated up, the Town claimed Murphy had picked up a two yard back-pass although it seemed far more a case of a deflection off a United defender. The Hammers could hold their heads high that they were still on level terms at the break. The Hammers had come more into the match as the game progressed, and if anything, just edged the half. Both sides had their chances, but without really bothering the Keepers, despite it being a hard-fought game.


H/T 0-0


In the second half the game continued in much the same way, until the ground erupted on 64 minutes when it was United who finally punctured the opposing defence. A ball from the back was brilliantly flicked on by Wilcock which found Neale in space on the left. With the visiting defence this time caught off-guard, Neale's pinpoint cross was headed firmly into the left corner of the net by captain Lee Francis. With the Town now forced to press forward more, they left gaps at the back. This meant the Hammers gradually gained control. They doubled their lead on 76 minutes following an inspired substitution from boss Tim Sills. However, the goal was not without controversy. There was certainly a case to be put that Wilcock's arm made contact with the ball as he crouched down to intercept a throw out from Town keeper. However, the Hammers' man played to the whistle, before laying the ball back to Jamie Beasley who thumped the ball with his first touch into the top right corner. The keeper did well even to get a hand to it. The United substitute had now gone from Zero, (when he received a red card on Saturday), to Hero. With the Town understandably deflated after that decision. They appeared to tire more as the match progressed, which meant the Hammers had little trouble in seeing out the game. Hamworthy thoroughly deserved their win over the 90 minutes, in what must surely be one of the club's proudest nights. They dominated in the air at both ends of the pitch, took their chances superbly when they came, and defended resolutely throughout. The only blemish was seeing Francis clutching his ankle in the last minute after a nasty if accidental collision, and we all hope he will be fit as United look to continue their FA Cup story at Cirencester Town on the 18th Sept.


F/T 2-0

Hamworthy United: S Murphy, H Wright, C Clarke, S Devlin (M Buckler 85) , C Cocklin, B Walker, E Hodge (J Beasley 75), L Francis (c) (D Cann 90), M Wilcock, M Neale, J Lovell Unused Subs: J Filkins, T Scott, A Costello

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