Wroxham denied by late show
Wroxham 2, Concord Rangers 2: Wroxham boss David Batch refused to be downbeat despite watching his side squander a two-goal lead in injury time during their FA Cup second round qualifying tie against Concord Rangers on Saturday.
When Matt Daniels fired the Yachtsmen 2-0 up in the 81st minute with a fantastic volley after Paul Cook put them ahead in the first half you could forgive the Trafford Park faithful for looking ahead to an FA Cup third qualifying round date.
However, Concord Rangers, who operate two divisions above Batch's side in the Ryman League Premier, staged a late comeback to ensure the two sides will have to do it all again on Tuesday evening at Thames Road.
'These things happen – it's very unlike us to concede, we've been very good defensively this season,' said Batch. 'It's the first time we've conceded two goals in a game this season so I'm not that down about it.
'We just have to get on with it – we proved that we were more than a match for a side that are two divisions above us and we will take the positives out of that.
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'We were the better side for long periods and just giving away a silly free kick in the closing stages has eventually cost us.'
Batch felt the visitors had fallen into the trap of underestimating his side despite the Essex outfit going into the encounter still searching for their first win in the league after nine games.
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'They probably thought they were coming away to a village team and they would probably be able to turn us over quite easily,' he added. 'But if you had a look at the two sides on paper my players have done a lot more in their careers so far.'
Cook had given the Yachtsmen the perfect start after just eight minutes with a close range finish, after Damien Hilton had flicked on Shaun Howes' corner.
Concord striker Kyle Asante nearly equalised in the 31st minute when through on goal, but his low drive was matched by a smart Scott Howie stop down to his left.
Ten minutes before the break Michael Noone went close with his well taken free-kick curling just wide of a post with Howie beaten.
Eight minutes into the second-half Ross Durrant nearly doubled Wroxham's advantage as his well executed half-volley went narrowly wide.
In the 54th minute Batch decided to make a tactical change as he withdrew striker Ben Thompson for wide man Gary Gilmore which left Cook up front by himself.
As skipper Graham Challen and Hilton kept things tight at the back Wroxham doubled their lead in the 81st minute.
It was a moment of individual brilliance from Daniels, as he teed himself up to fire home an unstoppable volley past the helpless Brightly.
It should have been game over but the Beach Boys from Canvey Island hit back.
In the 90th minute, sub Ryan Ware's flighted free-kick into the box found the head of an unmarked Steve King to spark a remarkable comeback.
Concord continued to press forward and equalised in the fourth minute of time added on.
Ware's through ball set Asante on his way to goal and his well placed shot past Howie forced an unlikely replay.
Wroxham will be quietly confident in the rematch after the amount of problems they caused at the weekend although Batch admitted Concord may be buoyed by the fact they got out of jail at Trafford Park.
'It's not going to be easy,' added Batch. 'We would have rather got it done on Saturday and now we've got the problem of people getting time off work etc to make the game.
'But we've already showed that we are a match for them. They got out of jail against us and that might give them a bit of a boost but we'll have to wait and see.'