Dereham to do it all again after abandonment

Dereham Town v Sholing in the FA Trophy. Searching in the fog.Photo: Steve Adams

Dereham Town v Sholing in the FA Trophy. Searching in the fog.Photo: Steve Adams

Dereham's eagerly awaited FA Trophy game against current FA Vase holders Sholing FC was forced to be abandoned after 70 minutes as thick fog enveloped Aldiss Park with little between the two sides.

The Southampton based side will now have to make the long 400 mile round trip for the replay tomorrow night.

The game started in foggy but playable conditions and from the kick-off Michael Clunan tested Rory Anderson with a long range effort that the visiting keeper spilled before claiming at the second attempt. Minutes later he struggled again to intercept Sam Borrer's through ball to Ryan Hawkins as the keeper made a nervy start.

In the 10th minute Olly Willis was upended 30 yards out by Sholing's Alex Sawyer who received the game's first yellow card. From the resultant free-kick Aaron Kay fired narrowly wide of keeper Anderson's right hand post. As the home side pressed again, Dan Morphew gained possession in his own half and threaded a precise ball to release Craig Bussens but the striker was denied by a fine tackle from Sholing's Kevin Brewster as he homed in on goal.

The visitors cleared the resultant corner with the ball being played out wide to Barry Mason on the left who found Nick Watts on the edge of the box enabling him to beat home keeper Andy Wilton with a low drive to give Sholing a 17th minute lead.


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Dereham threatened once more with Clunan, Sturman and Kay prominent.

With 29 minutes on the clock Dereham were forced to replace Sam Borrer with Toby Hilliard entering proceedings.

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As play switched ends home midfielder Lewis Sturman hit a fine low drive from the left hand side of the box that forced Keeper Anderson into a vital save.

From their next attack Ryan Hawkins delivered a dangerous low cross from the left byline with both Olly Willis and Craig Bussens unable to apply a finishing touch.

In the 39th minute home keeper Andy Wilton did well to turn aside Kevin Brewster's diagonal drive to safety.

Dereham continued to search for the equaliser and were rewarded in the 41st minute. Hawkins beat Kevin Brewster on the left and his cross fell to Bussens, whose close range effort was half saved by keeper Anderson with the ball ballooning up to Hilliard who headed home from point blank range to make it all square at the break.

At the restart Dereham made their second change with Matt Howard replacing Matt Hockley at centre back.

The Magpies were soon threatening the visitors goal with Ryan Hawkins surging down the right before passing inside to Toby Hilliard who was denied a second goal of the afternoon by keeper Anderson who got down well to save the striker's low 18 yarder.

Sholing responded with Alex Baldacchino blazing over Andy Wilton's bar from the edge of the box. As the fog began to descend again more thickly on Aldiss Park, Sholing caused problems again in the 56th minute with Nick Watts weaving down the right but home keeper Andy Wilton ended the danger by grasping his low cross to the near post.

Minutes later he was called into action once more to save Baldacchino's drive from the right. After Craig Bussens poor cross from the left flew behind for a goal kick, Dereham's Toby Hilliard was carded for a foul on Jack Smith.

With 70 minutes gone the referee took the decision to suspend play for 20 minutes with the linesman unable to see clearly across the full width of the pitch.

Conditions did not improve and after a further inspection Mr Dale decided to abandon the game. The tie will now be replayed at Aldiss Park tomorrow night, kick-off 7.45pm.

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