Sensational Crows produce the mother of all comebacks
Royston Town 5 Tring Athletic 4 ROYSTON TOWN produced the comeback of all comebacks to win an unbelievable Herts Charity Shield semi-final game against Premier Division side and holders of the cup Tring Athletic on Thursday evening at Garden Walk. With ei
Royston Town 5 Tring Athletic 4
ROYSTON TOWN produced the comeback of all comebacks to win an unbelievable Herts Charity Shield semi-final game against Premier Division side and holders of the cup Tring Athletic on Thursday evening at Garden Walk.
With eight minutes remaining The Crows were trailing 4-2 but they managed to turn the game upside down and a 95th minute winner from Luke Robins - who ran the entire length of the pitch with the ball before sliding it under the advancing keeper - sent everyone in the ground into ecstatic celebrations.
On a foul evening of heavy rain and surface water gathering on the pitch the conditions were a recipe for plenty of mistakes.
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Tring scored with their first attack on four minutes when a Michael Debnam clearance hit a visiting player with the rebound rolling to a forward to smash low into the corner.
Ryan Lockett then went close when his 20 yard strike turned behind by the keeper and Tring were disheartened to have a perfectly good goal ruled out when the referee pulled the game back to award them a free kick when an advantage would have seen them take a 2-0 lead.
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Royston had struggled to pass the ball well enough to open up a well drilled defensive unite but did level just before the break when Arron Welch headed in a Robins' corner off the underside of the crossbar.
Royston started the second half well with Lockett having a one-on-one effort blocked but were hit by a two goal burst in the 51st and 53rd minutes.
Luke Robins reduced the deficit soon after heading in Lockett's free kick but Tring were awarded a penalty moments later and increased the gap once more.
The game became a typical end to end affair and with eight minutes left Craig Hammond headed home from close range to cut the deficit to one.
Paul Attfield took off Danny Apostolos in defence and played three up front in the remaining time and with just seconds left his side was awarded a free kick centrally 25 yards out which Lockett hit into the top right corner.
With extra time looming Royston had one last surge with Robins picking the ball up just outside his own area to run the entire length of the pitch and smash under the advancing keeper.
The celebrations probably wasted two more minutes as the referee blew straight from the kick off for full time.
The result means Royston have now beaten three sides from the Premier Division to get to the final and will face a fourth in the form of Broxbourne Borough at the Letchworth County Ground.
Paul Attfield said: "I have never witnessed anything like that in all my years doing football.
"I have often spoken of the team spirit these guys have built up and that and their desire has just turned the game around when we looked dead and buried at 4-2.
"There were areas of our game that weren't good tonight but given the conditions and the standard of opposition it is all about the result and we can look forward to a second cup final."
Royston: Gibson, Endacott, Apostolos (Jackson), Debnam, Cain, Welch (Malins), Edwards, Young (Turl), Hammond, Lockett, Robins. Unused subs: Roach, Barlow.