FA CUP: No excuses as Highworth exit
JOHN Fisher refused to blame the Bournemouth Poppies pitch after Highworth crashed out of the FA Cup at the extra preliminary round stage.
In damp conditions, the Worthians were sunk 3-1 to the Wessex Premier side on the south coast and therefore missed out on a £1,500 prize fund.
Boss Fisher admitted that the majority of his team had not performed to their potential and said he could not complain at the end result.
“Bournemouth turned up and we forgot to turn up,” he said.
“Their first game of the season was called off due to the state of the pitch and I can understand why. It was poor, although of course it was the same for them.
“Truthfully we just didn’t perform. All of our preparation was as normal but seven of them weren’t on their game and we got what we deserved.
“I’m disappointed because it was a game that had to be won and financially that’s what you’re looking to do.”
Aaron Corby gave the Poppies the lead after 14 minutes when Elliott Knight was harshly adjudged to have brought his man down in the box.
Lewis Burgis’ diving header midway through the second half extended the lead and Connor Phillips had the home side cruising with a third.
A handball in the box late on gave Worthians striker TJ Bohane the chance to register a consolation goal, and he duly tucked away the spot kick.
Highworth were due to meet Cheltenham in the Hellenic Premier on Tuesday, but the Saracens will instead replay their FA Cup clash with Slimbridge, leaving the Worthians with a training session instead of a fixture.
Shrivenham also saw their FA Cup journey end prematurely and manager Dave Turner could not contain his frustration at the goals that resulted in his side’s 2-1 defeat at Westfield.
The home side took the lead from the spot after the referee ruled Scott Scanlon had tugged Dan Band’s shirt and Liam Parrington converted the resulting penalty.
Scanlon might have won a spot kick at the other end just before the break - again for a shirt pull - but striker Steve Robertson drew the visitors level from close range moments later.
The winner arrived on 56 minutes when Sam Black’s mis-hit shot from range looped over keeper Stewart Thompson and put the Combined Counties Premier side into the preliminary round.
Turner said: “To the letter of the law he (Scanlon) has pulled his shirt, but that goes on at every single corner in every single game.
“For their second goal he (Black) kicked the ball against his own foot and it looked like it was going to go miles over, but it dropped in.
“I’m disappointed, but there’s big improvements for us game on game. That doesn’t make you feel any better when you have lost, but there are positives to take out of it.”
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