Crows march on in FA Cup

ROYSTON Town took one step closer to Wembley on Saturday, after an impressive 3-1 win in their FA Cup preliminary round match at AFC Hayes. The Crows started brightly against a side that play two leagues above them, and took the lead after 15 minutes thro

ROYSTON Town took one step closer to Wembley on Saturday, after an impressive 3-1 win in their FA Cup preliminary round match at AFC Hayes.

The Crows started brightly against a side that play two leagues above them, and took the lead after 15 minutes through Ryan Lockett.

Lockett pounced after Hayes' goalkeeper could only parry Craig Hammond's stinging shot into his path.

But the Crows then gifted the home side an equaliser just two minutes later following a defensive mix-up.


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Royston goalkeeper Jordan Gibson's pass to Jamie Babbage was intercepted by Hayes' forward Victor Osubu, who smashed the ball into the top corner to level the scores.

To their credit, the Crows kept pushing forward, and regained the lead after 33 minutes, following a sublime individual goal by Luke Robins.

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Collecting the ball just inside the opposition half, Robins cut inside, beating two defenders before coolly slotting the ball past Hayes' advancing goalkeeper.

And then, on the stroke of half-time, Royston made it three, Lockett knocking the ball across the six-yard box for Craig Hammond to slide home.

Despite leading 3-1 at half-time, the Crows kept pushing forward in the second half and created a number of chances to extend their lead.

Hammond, Lockett and Robins all came close but none of them could find the net a second time.

Crows manager Paul Attfield said that he was pleased with both the result - which nets the club a cheque for £1,500 from the FA - and the performance of his players.

"I thought we thoroughly deserved to win," he said.

"We looked confident throughout, defensively we looked strong and on another day we could have quite easily won it by five or six goals."

The Crows will next play Ryman Premier League side Hendon in the FA Cup First Qualifying Round, at Garden Walk on Saturday, September 13.

And Attfield believes that "the magic of the FA Cup" can help his team take another higher league scalp.

"They are three divisions above us and it is going to be a fantastic day for the club because they haven't had a fixture like this for years," he said.

"We have already beaten two teams divisions higher than us, why shouldn't we do it again?

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