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FA Cup First Round Qualifying

Shortwood United 1 - 1 Cirencester Town

Two sublimely-executed goals, one for each side, in an otherwise utterly forgettable FA Cup tie means that Shortwood United and Cirencester Town will have to go through it all again in a replay on Tuesday night.

Mark Pritchett had been one of the heroes of Shortwood’s epic FA Cup run last season and for the majority of the game it looked like his fourth-minute goal for the visitors was going to dump his former team-mates out of the competition.

Pritchett, in an advance position from an early Ciren set-piece, launched himself at a Ben Wells cross and caught a scissors kick flush to send it rocketing past Tim King in the Shortwood goal.

Pritchett’s centre back partner Leigh Henry tried to get in on the act three minutes later but he headed a corner over the bar from a good position.

From that point Shortwood took control for a 20-minute spell but despite some dangerous crosses from Matt Bennett they rarely threatened the Ciren goal.

Ciren weathered the storm and came back with two set-piece headers from Leigh Henry (both saved) while Ed Williams was becoming increasingly influential up front.

However, at the other end, the hosts had their best chance in the 36th minute. Tim Haddock struck a rasping drive from 25 yards and with Lewis Sommers moving his considerable bulk out of the way only late, an unsighted Glyn Garner did well to pull off an excellent finger tip save.

Ciren had the ball in the net again in the 53rd minute, inevitably from a set piece. Wells floated a free kick to the back post where Matt Liddiard was adjudged offside as he headed the ball down into the path of Henry to finish.

With both sides well below their best, the tie became increasingly scrappy but the visitors should have sewn up matters in the 73rd minute when a Henry knockdown in the box fell to Liddiard six yards out.

The versatile midfielder, playing as a target man following the return of Nat Jarvis to Gloucester City after his successful loan spell at the Corinium Stadium, hit an unconvincing side-footed effort over the bar. It was the best chance of the match.

Ciren were made to rue the miss four minutes later when two Shortwood subs caught them on the break with a sucker punch. A Ciren attack broke down in the opponents’ box and three passes later it was in Garner’s net.

The ball was played out of defence and then fed down the right touchline to Thomas John. Ciren were slow to close him down and his pinpoint early cross was met at the back post by Ross Langworthy whose strike back across goal wrong-footed Garner.

A lot of indifferent huffing and puffing ensued until the final whistle without either side fashioning the killer chance that would have taken them to the next stage.

The replay will now be held at The Corinium Stadium, Cirencester on Tuesday evening the 16th September with a 7:45pm kick off. Please come along to support the team as they try to progress to the next round.

Attendance: 115

Referee: David Ricketts

Shortwood United: 

1.   Tom King
2.   Sam Rawlings
3.   Nick Humphreys
4.   Ashley Thomas (C)
5.   Jake Lee
6.   Tim Haddock
7.   Josh Egan
8.   Nick Hancock
9.   Lewis Sommers
10. Adam Price
11. Matt Bennett

12. Ross Langworthy
14. Marley Thomas
15. James Singh
16. Alex Sykes
17. Andy Hoskins

Cirencester Town:

1.   Glyn Garner
2.   Shayne Anson
3.   Ben Prictor
4.   Mark Pritchett
5.   Gethin Jones
6.   Leigh Henry
7.   Jamie Edge
8.   Ben Wells
9.   Aidan Bennett
10. Matt Liddiard
11. Ed Williams

12. Brad Hooper  (on for Ben Wells - 74 mins)
14. Ryan Elliott    (on for Shayne Anson - 86 mins)
15. James Mortimer-Jones
16. Jamie Reid   (on for Jamie Edge - 74 mins)

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