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Harrow Borough 2 Winchester City 1

on Sat 1 Oct

Winchester's attempt to reach the 4th qualifying round of the F A Cup for the first time since 1954 ended disappointment as they were beaten by two late Harrow Borough goals having taken a first half lead.

 

This was the first ever meeting between the teams, although long standing members of the Ryman Premier League Harrow Borough played against Eastleigh in the 2004/05 season, and Stuart Green played against them while with Bognor Regis last season.  Amongst their players was Josh Webb, son of former England international Neil Webb, and the player who represented Eastleigh briefly took most of their free kicks.

 

Winchester bought to the match a coach load of supporters who provided great vocal backing to their team throughout the encounter.

 

With Robbie Matthews cup tied Ross Bottomley played at centre half, but Jamie Brown the Winchester captain soon had to go off injured.  Adam Tomasso made an important block early on, while at the other end Winchester forced three successive corners.

 

Winchester however took the lead in the 12th minute when Danny King was fouled and Howard Neighbour converted the resulting penalty.  Ross Bottomley made an important block to deny Lewis Driver and from a goalmouth scramble Matt Charles-Smith shot wide, but at the interval a very determined Winchester team held the lead.

 

In the second half Max Holland came close and a cross from Josh Webb eluded everyone when it just required a simple touch.  Winchester were defending deeper and deeper and Harrow had pace up front, but the Winchester defenders were making some good interceptions to minimise the number of shots that goalkeeper Lewis Noice had to deal with.

 

Following good work by Francis Babalola Mark McLeod shot over, while at the other end Ross Bottomley's header from a free kick forced a save from Luke Williams, but the effort was comfortably dealt with.

 

Eleven minutes from time Shaun Preddie equalized for Harrow and shortly afterwards Babalola stung Noice's hands with his effort, but in added on time substitute Ibrahim Meite scored the winner.

 

On Saturday Winchester are at home to Petersfield in the F A Trophy, having been away to AFC Totton in the league cup this Tuesday.  They have been drawn away to Fleet in the Hampshire Senior Cup.