There would be no winter of discontent for Hednesford Town as they moved into the second qualifying round of the Buildbase FA Trophy with a 2-1 win at League rivals Stratford Town.
The home side took the lead through Ravi Shamsi but it was much ado about nothing for the visitors as goals from Reece King and Tom Elliott saw them through.
The Pitmen started brightest, forcing two corners in the first minute but it was Andy Wycherley who made the first save of the game, low down at his near post from Campbell before Danny Glover had a header at the other end saved by Bennett. On 16 minutes Stratford took the lead with a superb 40-yard lob from Shamsi who saw the ‘keeper off his line and finished well. However, it was a case of all that glitters is not gold for the home side when seven minutes later Reece King headed home from Tom Elliott’s corner. After a flurry of offside decisions against the Pitmen, the half time whistle went with the scores level.
The second half started as the first with Hednesford on the offensive but James Hurst may have thought, fair is foul and foul is fair when he was booked for a late tackle on Oulton in the 55th minute. A minute later Tom Elliott took advantage of a comedy of errors in the Stratford defence to make it 2-1. Hednesford then replaced Andre Brown with Kieran Wells before Keiron Morris was booked for a foul on QPR loanee, Woollard-Innocent, a man more sinned against than sinning? He was followed into the book by Jack Hallahan for preventing a Stratford break after a corner. Another series of offside decisions against Hednesford, again some dubious came and went before Kieran Wells had a chance to put the game to bed but his shot went just wide of the far post after he had sprung Stratford’s offside trap. Danny Glover then went close with a great effort from just inside the Stratford half which drifted wide with Bennett beaten. The last action of the game came when Andy Wycherley saved well at the feet of a Stratford striker,
Stratford could say ‘We have seen better days’ but it was all’s well that ends well for Hednesford who, measure for measure, were the better side on the night.
TEAM: Wycherley, Reid, Curley, Bailey (Capt), Morris, Hurst, Hallahan, King, Glover, Elliott, Brown (Wells).
SUBS (not used): Hodge, Fry, Daniels, Scott, Abadaki, Veiga.
The Pitmen will now meet Sutton Coldfield Town in the second qualifying round at Coles Lane on Saturday November 9th when they will come up against former Manager Neil Tooth who could feature ex Pitmen Desean Martin, Jimmy Mutton and Reece Leek in their squad.