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Pitmen score all three to progress

FT: Tamworth 1    2 Hednesford Town

24 October 2017Tamworth welcomed The Pitmen to The EST Electrical Services Stadium and the visiting side contained a few faces that were not unknown to The Lamb,
Former keeper’s Wren and Viega featured on the teamsheet as did one time Tamworth defender Sam Oji, while boss Rob Smith also played for The Lambs in the late 1990’s.
The Lambs got the game underway, attacking the Meadow Street End and Taylor made a good run towards the box on 3 but declined to shoot and tried to set up Fox but his pass was too hard.
A foul on Taylor by the Cross Street entrance corner on 6 gave The Lambs a freekick which went long. On 17 a deep ball into the box from the left found Hednesford’s Butlin but his volley cleared the target.
Taylor struck low from the edge of the area on 27 after a good set up from Deeney but the ball whizzed past Wren’s post and out. Hednesford exerted some pressure around the half hour mark and a header from Mutton looked like it would go into the top corner, but Jezeph pulled off a superb one handed stop to push it away from danger and keep it goalless on 32.
Both sides tried to get the ball forwards with differing rates of success but there were no further incidents for either as one minute added time was shown.

HT: Tamworth 0    0 Hednesford Town

The Pitmen got the game back underway and went on the attack straight away but it went to Jezeph and scuppered their hopes of an early second half breakthrough.
Reid made a good turn but shot straight at the keeper with the outside of his boot on 52.
Tamworth took the lead on 55 but had nothing to do with the goal as it was left to Pitmen defender Melbourne to pass the ball back diagonally from the left of defence past the stranded Wren and into the net, although it took the flag from the linesman to confirm that it hadn’t been cleared away before going over the line, which it quite obviously had by a good yard! (1-0, 55 mins)
On 63 Taylor made headway down the left and cut in before firing a shot which Wren parried and then came out for Shaw to try his luck, but he shot wide of the near post from 18 yards.
Reid got into a good position to receive Strong’s ball into the area shortly after and tried a flick over the keeper but it was too hard and cleared the target.
Knights replaced Fox for the final 20 minutes but it was Hednesford who struck on 80 when King headed home from a central position past the despairing dive of Jezeph as the ball bounced into the far left corner. (1-1, 80 mins)
Taylor received the ball in the box on 83 but his first touch meant his tightly angled shot was off target.
Strong’s final contribution before being substituted was a pacey run into the box and ball across the area that was ultimately cleared, as he made way for up and coming youngster Hayden.
Fitzpatrick struck powerfully from 20 yards on 88 but failed to trouble Jezeph but King powered a header past the keeper from a long throw on 90 to make it 2-1 to the visitors.
Deep into added time a freekick by Hednesford saw them keep the ball in the corner and the final whistle blew with The Lambs wishing the Pitmen all the best in the Second Round.

Tamworth Team:
Jezeph, Burns, Strong (Hayden 86), Deeney (c.), Coulson, Upton, Fox (Knights 72), Shaw, Reid, Taylor, Curley
Subs: Jones, Powell, Walters

Hednesford Town Team:
Wren, Thorley (c.), Melbourne, Bailey, Mutton, King, Steele (Crooks 81), Fitzpatrick, Butlin (Oji 87), Graham, Fitzgibbons (Glover 78) Subs: (four only) Viega

Attendance: 338

Man of the Match: Ellis Deeney

Referee: Mr. T. Reeves

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