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Sat. 8th September. FA Cup 1st Qual Frome Town 1 Winchester City 1

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A missed first half penalty ultimately proved costly for Frome, and after Winchester had taken a 55th minute lead through Tyrell Mitford, Frome equalised in the 77th as supersub, TJ Davies, found a telling cross to enable Kane Simpson to score from close range and send the tie to a replay on Tuesday night.

With Harry Barnes being unavailable for this match as Weymouth would not want their loan striker cup-tied for any future matches, Kane Simpson moved into the centre forward slot and with Kris Miller also unavailable, Connor Roberts took over at right back.

Right from the start, it was obvious that these were two evenly matched sides with both looking to play good football, and Frome were first to show as Dan Demkiv hit a driven cross that Alex Monk was close to getting his head to. But then Frome’s James Corey was forced into making a sharp save at his near post as Frome failed to clear their lines.

In the 21st, Connor Roberts showed how dangerous he can be as he overlapped on the right and curled a left foot shot into the body of Ryan Price, and five minutes later Frome were again grateful to Corey as he produced a very good sharp save as Frome had been caught cold by a through ball to the dangerous Mitford.

With Winchester probably having the better of the game at this stage, Frome missed a golden opportunity to take the lead in the 29th as a clever ball by Dan Demkiv ball allowed Simpson to go  round Ryan Pryce before being taken down by the keeper. But a weak penalty from a nervous-looking Ollie Knowles allowed Pryce to save easily to his left and the score remained 0-0. Roberts again caused trouble for the visitors as he overlapped in the 33rd, but Frome then went very close on the stroke of half time as Sam Teale rose above everyone as he found space at a corner, but the ball missed his forehead by a whisker when he must surely have scored if contact had been made.

The second half saw the visitors take the lead in the 55th as they worked the ball across the Frome box for Mitford to swivel on the edge of the area to shoot past Corey into the far corner. But this stung Frome into action and a period of five minutes saw Demkiv clip a lob just over the bar, and as the pressure was maintained, a series of several corners in a row kept the visitors’ defence on their toes.

Despite Frome’s efforts, Winchester always looked fairly comfortable defending their lead, but they were undone in the 77th as Davies outstripped his marker on the right and rolled a perfect ball across the area to Simpson who couldn’t miss from close range, to the delight of the home crowd.

Perhaps Winchester then settled for the replay or perhaps Frome stepped things up at the end of the match, but for the remaining time it was all about Frome going for the winner, but the telling pass never materialised and the result of the replay on Tuesday would take a brave man to predict.

Scorer Kane Simpson was chosen for the Man of the Match Award in a row by match sponsor Mark Baber.

Frome Scorer: Simpson (77) Winchester Scorer: Mitford (55) Crowd: 165 Star Man: Kane Simpson Entertainment Value: 3/5

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