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Match Report: Basingstoke Town v Hartley Wintney, FA Cup

Post by KOB - 02-09-2017, 21:14

Saturday 2nd September ‘17
The Emirates FA Cup – 1st Round Qualifying
Report by David Graham

The North Hampshire local derby produced an enthralling contest and the sides must do it all over again on Tuesday night at Green Lane, Hartley Wintney.

Hartley were quickest out of the blocks and within a minute Steve Duff’s cross was deflected wide. ‘Stoke responded and on 5 minutes Ashleigh Artwell set Sam Smart through for a chance. The young striker's early shot found Hartley 'keeper Paul Strudley well positioned.

Hartley regained the initiative and good work from Jack French gave Sam Argent a chance, which saw the striker lob just over. The Row continued to probe and clever play from Joe Paris created a chance for Paul Hodges, who shot straight at Colm McAdden in the ‘stoke goal.

Against the early run of play Basingstoke took the lead with a quality goal on 11 minutes. Sam Smart did well to create space on the right and his accurate cross was nonchalantly volleyed into the net by Ben Wright, taking the ball at knee height. (1-0).

The goal lifted the home side and on 16 minutes Ben Wright created a scoring chance for himself but shot straight at Paul Strudley from a poor angle.

With much of the play in midfield, it was the home side who were looking the more likely to score. On 28 minutes a surging run from Marcus Johnson-Shuster saw a good low cross from the right which eluded everyone. A minute later, Sam Smart's attempted cross hit the top of the Row’s crossbar.

Hartley forced a number of corners throughout the half but were unable to create a chance. On 35 minutes, Sam Argent did well to create space and spotted McAdden off his line, but his lob from 25 yards finished well over the bar.
HALF TIME: Basingstoke Town 1 Hartley Wintney 0

Hartley started the half well and on 48 minutes a Dean Stow free kick on the right found the head of Liam Eagle, who was unable to get fully over the ball and headed wide.

With the diminutive Sam Smart causing the Row defence problems with his pace, ‘stoke gained a foothold in the match, and a good passing move down the right on 52 minutes finished with Dan Collier shooting wide from the edge of the box.

Basingstoke continued in the ascendancy and added to their lead on 66 minutes with a goal gift wrapped from the Row. Steve Noakes and goalkeeper Strudley got the communication wires crossed and, in the end, the keeper's attempted clearance only found Marcus Johnson-Shuster, who gratefully slammed the ball into the net from 15 yards. (2-0).

Hartley responded well and on 69 minutes were unlucky not to pull a goal back. Good interplay between Steve Duff and Sam Argent created a chance for Paul Hodges, who was unlucky not to be able to turn the ball into the net from close range.

The Row started pushing forward but were almost undone on 77 minutes when Ben Wright saw an effort go straight to Paul Strudley.

Hartley brought on their three substitutes as they piled forward to save the match, and on 82 minutes they got their reward with a gift wrapped goal from the ‘stoke. A long distance central free kick from Dean Stow beat the wall but found Colm McAdden well positioned. However, the keeper spilled the shot and Paul Hodges, following up, slammed the rebound into the net (2-1).

Three minutes later a still shaken McAdden was fortunate to see the ball go behind for a corner when parrying another effort from Dean Stow.

Hartley continued to pound away and on 86 minutes they pulled level with a good goal. A series of short exchange passes on the edge of the box between Sam Argent and Paul Hodges saw the latter slam home the equaliser from 12 yards. (2-2)

The boost to the Row was visible and they almost snatched victory in added time. Hartley worked the ball in from the left and the cross found Steven Duff at the back post. The winger's full blooded effort was parried behind with an excellent stop from McAdden.
Full Time: Basingstoke Town 2 Hartley Wintney 2

A good entertaining match, with the players of both sides all deserving credit. For Basingstoke, Sam Smart looks a real find, and for Hartley, Paul Hodges showed that he is a class act.

Hartley Wintney: Paul Strudley, Louie Paget, Dean Stow, Joe Paris, Steve Noakes, Liam Eagle, Steve Duff, Jack French, Sam Argent, Paul Hodges, Luke Perkins. Subs: Aaron Parfitt (for Joe Paris), Adam Everiss (for Luke Perkins), Adam New (for Louie Paget), Jayden Englefield

Both Hartley managers were understandably happy. "This performance gives us a lot of confidence for Tuesday’s match," said Daniel Brownlie, adding, "We realise we will be underdogs again but always relish that tag. It was a great game for us all to be part of. The substitutes did well when they came on and provided different threats, which helped us to finish extremely strongly, and naturally we are pleased to gain the replay."
  • KOB

    02-09-2017, 21:46

    If I'm honest, after gifting Basingstoke their second I didn't expect us to come back, so full marks to the boys for never giving it up (and the equaliser came as an especially big relief for Struds I imagine, after that monumental mix up! ).

    Paul Hodges - quality finishing. First time I'd seen Paul in our colours and he looks a quality signing and a great pairing with Sam.

    I felt we gave the ball away far too cheaply at times for most of the first half and some of the second. It will be very tough to get the win on Tuesday but I'm encouraged by the feeling that we played well but weren't at our very best today, so there's more there to come from us if we give 'Stoke respect but don't fear them and go out and play our own game, as I felt we did in the last ten minutes when we had nothing to lose.

    I agree with Dan's post match comment that the late changes gave us something different - Adam New and Adam Everiss were immediately involved, but I felt Parfs in particular turned the game. Nothing spectacular, he just made things happen in the calm way Aaron goes about his game. A deserved draw - I'd have hated to have gone down 2-1 to that gift of a goal!

    Just one negative. The vociferous Hartley lads behind the goal did a great job of adding to the atmosphere and getting behind the boys, until the OTT bad language and ranting. Sometimes I shout things in frustration I shouldn't, but that was prolonged, used a word I consider taboo (if mostly from just one person by the sounds of it) and I found it embarrassing. Call me old fashioned, or just old, I don't care, and sorry if that upsets anyone of our crew, but I won't let it ride without a comment - I don't want to hear that again in support of The Row, anywhere, any time.
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