Steve Castle heaped praise on hat-trick hero Matt Bateman as Royston Town moved into the second qualifying round.

The striker hit a hat-trick as the Crows won 3-0 at Hertford Town and the boss said that was the difference.

Speaking on the club website, he said: "All three of his goals were taken with a calmness and accuracy that we are looking for week in week out.

"His finishing was top drawer and for us to secure a clean sheet and not give away any silly goals was another bonus."

Royston will have another away day in the next round when they go to National League South Hemel Hempstead Town.

Castle said: "Obviously, a cup run is important for all non-league clubs, for a variety of reasons, and we are no different.

"We would have liked a home draw but as I’m sure you are aware, there are a number of links and backstories between ourselves and Hemel and so it’s sure to be a fiercely fought cup tie and one that I know our staff and players are looking forward to."