Bowers & Pitsea 1 Egham Town 1

Updated: October 28, 2017

I was back at the Len Salmon Stadium to see my latest match in my Buildbase FA Trophy trail as Bowers & Pitsea hosted Egham Town in a First Qualifying Round tie.

Bowers had needed a replay to see off fellow Bostick North side Dereham Town to progress into this round whilst Egham had a much simpler passage through after the Evo Stik Southern East side demolished Bostick South bottom side Shoreham 7-1 in Surrey.

Both sides were doing well in their respective divisions too so a close hard fought cup tie was expected.  It was the visitors who started the better though and saw an early Matt Woods effort fly wide of the far post and on seven minutes Aaron Berry struck a fierce effort straight at hosts keeper Callum Chafer as the hosts struggled early on.

The hosts first chance came in the 13th minute and saw David Knight fire wide from the edge of the box and four minutes later they created another opening when a long throw was headed down to Gavin Cockman but the Bowers forward scuffed his effort and it dribbled into Pat Ohman’s hands.

Egham were soon back on the front foot minutes later though and an attack down the right saw a dangerous low ball in well fielded by Chafer as Liam Tack was ready to pounce and then just before the half hour mark a great free kick into the Bowers box by Egham full back Ryan Phillips almost found the head of Rhys Paul.  Any touch and surely the visitors would have taken the lead.

And moments later they should of done as Woods ran in on goal, rounded keeper Chafer,  but then fires across goal as Bowers survived another scare.

In the 33rd minute Bowers attacked and saw a Tony Stokes effort blocked before it came out to Ben Sartain who fired over from distance and two minutes before the break the hosts almost pinched a half time lead when a flick on from Cockman found  Stokes who laid in Knight but his effort was tipped wide by Ohman.

And from the second corner in the attack the ball came out to Cockman whose fierce drive at goal was diverted over by Stokes.  It meant the teams reached the half goalless although the visitors would have been the happier so far.

Half Time Bowers & Pitsea 0 Egham Town 0

Bowers came out much better than they had begun the first period and saw Sartain try a spectacular dipping effort from range early in the half but it went over the visitors bar and then seven minutes later Jamie Salmon curled a free kick over the bar.

But just before the hour mark Bowers were rewarded for their decent spell when Jamie Dicks sent a corner to the back post and into a posse of defenders on the line who made a mess of it and hacked into the corner of their own net.  Who got the final touch is anyone’s guess but it was definitely an own goal and Bowers had a slender advantage.

Egham tried to respond five minutes later when substitute Lewis Stead drilled a free kick from distance but this was saved by Chafer then up the other end Bowers had a great chance to possibly kill the visitors off when Knight saw a close range header saved by Ohman before the rebound was scrambled wide.

With thirteen minutes left a cross into the Bowers box saw Chafer fail to claim under pressure but Woods could only hook the loose ball wide and then two minutes later they went even closer when
substitute Brendan Matthews glanced a header over Chafer but onto the post and Bowers survived.

However they could survive only a minute longer as with ten minutes left the visitors found an equaliser as Woods got in and squared across goal to substitute Ryan De Battista who rammed home first time and set up a frantic final few minutes.

But neither side could find a winner as the game became rather fractious at times, and so it ended all square setting up a replay in Surrey next week.  Should be a tasty one that.

Full Time Bowers & Pitsea 1 Egham Town 1
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