Australia-bound striker James aims to hand Wisbech Town a departing FA Vase gift at Hadleigh United

Tom James on the rampage for Wisbech Town against Spalding last weekend. Picture: STEVE WILLIAMS Tom James on the rampage for Wisbech Town against Spalding last weekend. Picture: STEVE WILLIAMS

Saturday, February 15, 2014
8:45 AM

Striker Tom James is desperate to head Down Under having helped secure Wisbech Town’s place in the FA Vase quarter-finals.

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The pacy frontman, known as TJ, will play his last game for the Fenmen today before he moves to Australia to take up a coaching job. And having scored in every round of this year’s competition so far, the 20-year-old is keen to make Hadleigh United his latest victim.

The Boston-based player said: “It’s our last chance of silverware, and it’s my last game for Wisbech as well so I want to play my best. I wouldn’t say we’re underdogs as I’ve never even heard of Hadleigh. They don’t know nothing about us and we turn it on in the big games. I’ll try my best and I’m sure we’ll beat them.”

TJ signed for the United Counties League Premier Division club – the area’s last remaining Vase hope – in July 2013. The former Boston Town, Spalding United and Deeping Rangers’ speed merchant has found the net 24 times this term. Six of those goals have been spread across Wisbech’s Vase victories at Gornal, Walsall Wood and Ashington.

Only Danny White, twice, and Callum Reed have found the net in their side’s quest to reach a Wembley final ahead of this afternoon’s fifth-round trip to runaway Thurlow Nunn Premier Division leaders Hadleigh.

Joint-boss Dick Creasey said: “If Tom is selected, that’s another dilemma for me, he will want to depart on a good note I’m sure and go Down Under knowing that he’s left the club still in the competition. But Tom is just one part of the cog and there’s 13 or 14 other players that are just as important to us as Tom, but we know what he’s done in previous rounds.”

Goalkeeper Lea Jordan and Callum Stocks are cup-tied for the last-16 tie. Godmanchester Rovers shot-stopper Carl Mackney will deputise in goal. Hadleigh will be without injured duo Scott Chaplin and Neil Calver, Matt Downing will be working while Tesfaye Bramble – the brother of Titus – will undergo a late fitness test.

For more build-up, including James on his team-mates and an interview with Hadleigh boss Stuart Crawford, visit www.edp24.co.uk/wnsp to hear a West Norfolk Sports Podcast FA Vase special.

- Hadleigh have urged supporters to park at the nearby Magdalen Road car park (IP7 5AD).

- For live updates from today’s game, follow Gavin Caney on Twitter - @GavinCaney

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