Robins stunner earns Crows FA Cup replay
Winner’s of Tuesday’s rematch to face Bury Town in Second Qualifying Round
FA Cup First Qualifying Round
Wingate & Finchley 1
Royston Town 1
LUKE ROBINS’ spectacular volley eight minutes from time earned the Crows a second bite at the cherry against their Ryman Premier League opponents in the FA Cup on Saturday.
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The two teams will lock horns for the replay tomorrow (Tuesday) evening at Garden Walk, with the winners travelling to Ryman Premier League side Bury Town in the Second Qualifying round.
Once again Paul Attfield’s side did it the hard way coming from behind with a second half performance that could and probably should have seen them win the tie.
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Like in recent league games, Royston started slowly and allowed their higher division hosts to dominate the opening exchanges. Will Norris had to make a superb early save to claw away a fine 20-yard chip but it was no surprise when Wingate took an 18th minute lead when poor defending allowed David Laird to score from a tight angle.
The hot conditions made it tough for the players but the pitch was in superb condition and Royston gradually found their feet and created two good chances with Ryan Ingrey turning a right-wing cross wide from eight yards before Robins headed a free-kick over the crossbar from close range.
The remainder of the first half remained in the balance but the visitors lacked their normal spark and the interval came at the right time.
Kaan Fehmi and Matt Standen replaced Ingey and Malins during the break and not for the first time this season the team returned a fine second-half display.
The Crows took the game to their hosts and spent much of the half in and around the Wingate penalty area but just lacked a cutting edge to create the openings their approach-play deserved.
As time ticked away it looked like their first-half performance would cost the Crows. But with eight minutes remaining Robins produced a special finish to earn his side a replay.
The winger raced on to a long diagonal ball from defence and, after getting behind the full-back, hit a first time volley across the keeper into the top corner.
The hosts looked tired and Royston went for the jugular with Ryan Lockett and Standen both shooting over the bar from great positions with the home side defending desperately.
A last minute chance fell to Lockett from a left-wing cross but his looping header was cleared off the line.
Royston Town: Norris, Endacott, Wilson, DeLaSalle, Bradshaw, Collins, Edwards, Malins (Fehmi), Ingrey (Standen), Lockett, Robins.