Robinsâ€™ FA Trophy success continues against Londoners
BRILLIANT Bideford have booked themselves a first class ticket into the next round of the FA Carlsberg Trophy.
A barnstorming first-half performance â€“ and watertight second-half display â€“ gave the Robins a memorable 1-0 win against London visitors Dulwich Hamlet from the Ryman Isthmian Football League Division One South.
The second round qualifying win earned the North Devon side ï¿½3,000 from the FA prize fund as well as another home draw against Londoners AFC Hornchurch, from the Isthmian League Premier Division, on Saturday, November 20.
A crowd of 246 â€“ one of the biggest of the season â€“ was at the Sports Ground to see Saturdayâ€™s win. They were given plenty to cheer about early on as the home team took the game to the visitors in the opening exchanges.
Sean Downing had a one-on-one effort well-saved by keeper James Dunn and Ben Wood was dispossessed as he looked ready to unleash an effort at goal.
Bideford really did crank up the pressure with a succession of corner kicks but Dulwich always looked threatening on the break and Bideford keeper Matt Armstrong-Ford needed to be on his toes as the hosts were forced to deal with a number of high balls themselves.
The breakthrough came early in the second half when Dominic Rivans lofted the ball into the box and Jamie Mudge pounced on a mis-cleared ball to score the tieâ€™s decisive goal.
The goal galvanised the visitors, who nearly pulled level immediately after the restart and began to turn the tables on the Robins. Armstrong-Ford forced Ethan Pinnock to fire wide into the side-netting and Nyren Clunis saw his header rebound back off the upright and into Armstrong-Fordâ€™s arms.
Ellis Laight could have settled Bidefordâ€™s nerves with 10 minutes to go but he fired his effort straight at Dunn.
Dulwich looked dangerous until the final whistle and the nail-biting only intensified when Sol Pinnock whipped a dangerous ball across the face of the Bideford goalmouth with almost the last kick of the match.
Bideford are at home to top of the league Sholing on Saturday.
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