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The Emirates FA Cup 2019/20

Second Round Qualifying


Cirencester Town  2 – 2  Chippenham Town

Click   photo to view a slideshow of photos from the match

Courtesy of Steve Rolfe Photography

Match Report by Dave Pyzer


The Corinium Stadium was the place to be on Saturday afternoon to witness a thrilling, cup-tie that included a stunning 35 yard strike, two goals in two minutes and a poachers goal, as well as testing the woodwork 3 times - when Cirencester Town hosted near neighbours and National League South side Chippenham Town in a Second Round Qualifying match of The Emirates FA Cup.


The visitors kicked off on a warm day playing towards The Shed end of the ground and almost immediately lost the ball enabling Cirencester to counter as Tommy Ouldridge released Oliver Artwell and Will Christopher down their right flank to the corner. Shortly afterwards Cirencester worked the front edge of the Chippenham box for Jack Freeman to unleash a fierce strike that cannoned off the bottom of the right post to be re-cycled back to Artwell and Christopher resulting in a throw-in to Chippenham that eventually led to David Pratt cutting in from the right – defended.

Cirencester were soon back again this time down their left flank as John Dennis cut right to shoot at goal from the left front corner of the visitors box but ‘keeper Will Henry was in position to catch the effort.  

The home side had started very positively and continued to take the game to their visitors as they pressed down both flanks with Mike Pook firing a free kick just wide of the left post and sliding a pass behind the Chippenham back line as Freeman made a break into their box.   

Chippenham responded to counter to the right corner as Chris Zebroski crossed towards the penalty spot but the ball was cleared and as they broke forward a foul was committed enabling Curtis MacDonald to square the free kick to George Rigg who fired wide of the left post from 30 yards.

As the mid-point of the half approached Cirencester were pressing again but a long clearance kick sent the ball towards the front edge of the home area forcing ‘keeper Lewis Clayton to advance to the edge of his box to punch clear with Zebroski rapidly closing.

Shortly after this point Zebroski made a rampaging run down the left touchline that Christopher brought to a halt with a well timed tackle and then Karnell Chambers crossed from the left corner but David Pratt blazed over the bar at the far post.

‘The Bluebirds’ were beginning to settle and when they worked the ball to the right corner for a corner kick it led to Zebroski firing over the bar as he shot on the turn from 25 yards. 

Back came Cirencester as a series of passes worked the ball down their right flank but the resulting cross was cut out and it wasn’t long before it reached Chambers who cut right from the left front corner of the home box to shoot towards the top right corner but Clayton made a superb save to push it round his left post for a corner kick that led to another one from the left. This kick was cleared out of the box and just as Cirencester looked to re-group it was collected by CALLUM GUNNER, right of centre some 35+ yards out, who took a touch before rifling a stunning strike into the top left corner to open the scoring.  0-1. 

Undeterred Cirencester worked the ball to the right corner to win a corner kick that Freeman delivered to the far post where Shayne Anson and Alan Griffin challenged for the ball to rebound over the bar.

As the half was drawing to a close Chambers had another effort parried by Clayton and Zebroski hit the rebound into the side-netting whilst at the other end Ouldridge darted forward to send a glancing header, from a Will Tunnicliff cross from the left flank, wide of the right post.

Half Time:  0-1

The first half had certainly been competitive and only a sensational strike separated the teams but the second half got off to an electrifying start as Cirencester scored two goals in the first 3 minutes.

Lewis Clayton launched a free kick from the right flank downfield for Griffin to head towards the centre line of the pitch for JOHN DENNIS to collect, 30 yards out, before driving forward to the left channel of the Chippenham box. Once there he struck a left footed shot towards the far right post but a covering defender managed to block its progress with the ball rebounding back to Dennis who promptly tucked it inside the vacant left post.  1-1.

Almost immediately Cirencester scored a second when the alert Pook delivered a quick, long throw-in from the right flank into the path of the breaking JACK FREEMAN and he drove into the penalty area to right of the penalty spot before slipping the ball past Henry and inside the right post.  2-1.   

Encouraged by their success Cirencester pressed forward and during the next ten minutes whilst producing some free-flowing football Freeman had a firm strike saved and Griffin fired a right footed volley, on the turn, narrowly over the cross-bar.

Just after the hour mark the hard working Zebroski was released into the right channel of the home penalty area and his first attempt struck the bottom of the right post and rebounded towards the right by-line where Zebroski tried again but Clayton had recovered his ground to make the catch.

The reply from Cirencester was a superb pass from Pook, inside the right back, for Dennis to collect in the left channel of the Chippenham penalty area. Dennis advanced and struck the cross-bar with the ball rebounding towards Griffin who had the ball taken off his toe at the far post.    

Was this the moment that could have put the game to bed?

A minute later Pook sent a measured pass to Dennis as he cut in from the left flank and this time his left footed shot cleared the bar.

As the half passed the mid-point Chippenham began to enjoy more possession, having introduced more forwards in search of a goal, and as they pressed the home defence made a series of blocks to deny them.

Having said that Cirencester were still dangerous on the counter but with eight minutes of scheduled time remaining a Kieren Parselle cross from the left flank reached the head of former Centurion Nat Jarvis who directed his header towards the top left corner. Clayton managed to leap and get a hand on it, deflecting it onto his right post but as it dropped LUKE HOPPER was quickest to react to poke it home from a couple of yards.  2-2. 

Once again the game reverted to attack and counter attack with Griffin nearly reaching a delicate chip into the box from Pook and Adam Connolly making a well-timed block on Jarvis as he broke into the box but there were no further goals and it goes to a replay.  

Full Time:   2-2

What a fabulous game of ‘cup-tie’ football with plenty to enjoy from both sides - particularly for the neutral supporter.


Attendance:  336                                

Referee:   Mark Howes



1.   Lewis Clayton
2.   Will Christopher
3.   Will Tunnicliff
4.   Mike Pook
5.   Shayne Anson
6.   Tommy Ouldridge
7.   Oliver Artwell
8.   Adam Connolly
9.   Alan Griffin     (C) 
10.  Jack Freeman                                            48
11.  John Dennis                                                46

12.  Jordan Morris                                (Oliver Artwell-81mins)                                   
14.  James Mortimer-Jones                 
15.  Will Wellon
16.  Alfie Cook
17.  Sam Ayres   (GK)
18.  Tommy Anderson



 1.   Will Henry
 4.   George Rigg
 5.   Chris Zebroski
 7.   Tariq Ossai
 8.   Callum Gunner                                            34
12.   Harry Rutty
14.   Kieren Parselle     (C)
16.   Curtis McDonald
17.   Karnell Chambers
19.   David Pratt
20.  Luke Haines 

 3.  Jay Foulston
 9.  Nat Jarvis                                      (David Pratt-50mins)
10.  Luke Hopper                                   (Harry Rutty-77mins)  82
11.  James Guthrie                                (Tariq Ossai-61mins)
21.  Garry Horgan
18.  Connor Thompson  (GK)

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