Royston see off Thetford in FA Vase

Crows handed Third Round trip to league rivals

Royston Town 3

Thetford Town 1

FA Carlsberg Vase Round Two

ROYSTON TOWN will face an away trip to fellow Spartan South Midlands Premier League side Haringey Borough in the FA Vase Third Round after coming through a tough tie with Thetford on Saturday.

The Crows will travel to Coles Park on Saturday, December 3, hoping for a repeat of the 4-1 result they inflicted on the Tottenham-based side at Garden Walk back in September.

They were worthy winners against Thetford on Saturday, and have now won their last eight matches in all competitions.

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The visitors, who had to play for just under an hour with 10 men, went ahead through an early Matt Dixon penalty but Tom Malins drew the Crows level 10 minutes later and goals from Matt Standen and Kaan Femi after the break sealed a hard-fought win for Paul Attfield’s team.

Thetford, who play in Ridgeons Division One and came into the match with a 100 per cent record this season, started brightly and were awarded a penalty on 16 minutes. Centre-half Jason Beck was adjudged to have fouled the Thetford man, who had appeared to be offside, although the linesman deemed otherwise, and Dixon stepped up to send Will Norris the wrong way.

Royston needed to settle down but they weren’t helped when full-back Arin Fehmi was forced off with an injury minutes later, being replaced by Martin Standen.

It was clear Thetford’s gameplan was to be physical with their opponents but all too often this bordered on being plain dirty as time after time Royston players were recklessly hacked to the ground.

Royston steadied themselves and were back level on 26 minutes. Jack Bradshaw’s long diagonal pass was controlled superbly in full-stride by Malins with his right foot before the winger cleverly lobbed the advancing ‘keeper with his left from outside the area – a brilliantly executed goal.

Thetford’s dirty antics continued but they were made to pay on 32 minutes when goalscorer Dixon – who had already been booked for dissent – was given his marching orders with a second yellow for a wild lunge on Beck.

Royston started the second half in the best possible fashion and they went ahead on 47 minutes. Beck picked out Ricky Young on the left with a 50-yard pass, and the winger took it beautifully into his stride to beat his marker before squaring to Matt Standen who tapped home in front of goal.

There seemed little way back for the visitors as Royston now had a firm grip on the match. And they should have been given the chance to go further ahead on 54 minutes when Kaan Fehmi was scythed down in the box. However the referee somehow waved away appeals for what was one of the most blatant penalties you are ever likely to see on a football pitch.

This didn’t deter Attfield’s side, though, who continued to push for the killer third and it duly arrived on the hour-mark from the penalty spot, unsurprisingly. Carl Edwards was brought down after bursting into the box and Kaan Fehmi sent the ‘keeper the wrong way from 12 yards.

Young was unlucky not to make it four when his curling 25-yard effort cannoned off the post with 20 minutes remaining, but Royston were worthy winners of this tie and they now advance to the last 64 with dreams of a Wembley final still burning strong.

Royston Town: Norris; Endacott, Beck, McGrandles (c), A Fehmi (Martin Standen 17), Malins, Bradshaw, Edwards, Young, K Fehmi (Lockett 82), Matt Standen.

Attendance: 266