Royston Town boss Steve Castle - ‘FA Trophy is as important as the league’ after Crows crush Maldon and Tiptree

Royston Town manager Steve Castle in the game between Royston Town v Biggleswade Town at Garden Walk

Royston Town manager Steve Castle in the game between Royston Town v Biggleswade Town at Garden Walk, Royston, Hertfordshire. Picture: DANNY LOO - Credit: Picture: DANNY LOO

Royston Town boss Steve Castle insists the FA Trophy is as important as the league after the Crows cruised to a 3-0 first-round qualifying win over Maldon and Tiptree on Saturday.

The Garden Walk side were desperate to avenge their September FA Cup exit - when they lost 3-2 to AFC Sudbury in first round qualifying - and fielded a full-strength side against the Isthmian League North side.

A crushing first-half performance and professional second period saw the Crows earn their fourth clean sheet in five games, and go into the hat for the second round qualifying draw held at Wembley.

Speaking to CrowSport, Castle said: “It’s definitely as much of a priority as the league.

“It was always going to be important but the FA Cup loss makes it more so. It’s important to the board, to me and to the players.

“There’s quite significant prize money so it’ll be great if we can get a nice cup run.

“We had the Sudbury game in the back of our minds and wanted to make sure it didn’t happen again. We dealt with the game a lot better and killed it in the first-half which was very pleasing.”

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After a slow start at the Wallace Binder Ground, the Crows began to dominate and opened the scoring after 11 minutes. A Corcoran corner soared deep into the box for the towering Adam Murray to perform the knock-down, and James Potton tapped in his second in two games.

Their lead was doubled eight minutes later when Spyros Mentis chipped a ball through for Vance Bola, who charged clear and blasted it past the host’s keeper.

They were out of sight moments before half-time, when Murray blocked a clearance from a Jammers’ clearance, gathered the ball and fired in.

The second half saw the Crows go down to 10 men when Gus Scott-Morriss limped off after Castle had made all of his three subs, but they contained their hosts cooly.

Royston will host Thame United in the next round, but first Halesowen Town travel to Garden Walk on Saturday in the league.

Castle added: “The midland teams seem very organised and physical but they’ll have to travel.

“We’ll take nothing for granted and try to keep this rich vein of form we’re on.”