|Date||Tuesday 14 October 2014|
|Match||Royston Town v St Neots Town|
|Competition||Red Insure Cup: 1st Round|
|Result||Won 2-2 (4-2 on Penalties)|
|Royston Scorers||Ingrey, Dobson|
Royston Town hosted the current holders of the League Cup, Premier Division St Neots Town, in a cup match that was possibly to be used by both sides to give some players game time who have not featured much recently in full matches and the Crow’s line-up saw starts for Lewis Endacott, Spyros Mentis, Reece Dobson, Ryan Lockett and the return from a loan spell, crowd favourite, Ryan Ingrey and we also saw a first team debut for Dominic Russo in the Royston goal. But we did not see the previous incumbent, Paul Bastock, between the posts for the visitors.
The Crows made an impressive and lively start to this match with young left full back Kane Adams prominent in the early action and it was his superb cross on 7 minutes that found a leaping Ingrey to direct a precision header past Jamie Greygoose in the St Neots goal to take an early lead.
The score-line was increased to 2-0 on 17 minutes when more high quality work from Adams saw him drive forward and deftly loft a pinpoint 10 yard lob over the static St Neots’ defenders for striker Reece Dobson to sneak round the back, remain onside, and prod home easily.
A good half of football from the home side that was punctuated with spoiling tactics from their visitors combined with their continual haranguing of the match officials enough to secure a booking for the committed Mentis and a further warning that spurred Steve Castle to remove him from the action before an enforced coerced dismissal was seen.
The always involved and influential Gary Hart had taken some kind of blow just before half time and was visibly struggling and Castle chose to remove him from the action during the half time interval replacing him with Kaan Fehmi in the holding front role.
Fehmi immediately went about his probing and skilful business proving a constant thorn in the side to the Saints, but noticeably not always on the same frequency as his strike partner Dobson.
St Neots got one back on 53 minutes through Lorenzo Ferrari with fast and impressive movement going forward and the visitor’s equaliser was scored by Ed Adjei on the hour-mark and this better period from the visitors suggested they were in the ascendancy in this fast flowing cup-tie as the Crows lost their shape slightly and this induced mild panic. This nervy period was weathered and they regained enough composure to create their own share of chances to win this game in the normal 90 minutes as good openings fell for both Fehmi and Dobson that they couldn’t quite convert. Up the other end the embattled defence did enough to limit the Saints to long and invariably wayward pot-shots. However, it needed two excellent late saves from new debutant stopper Russo to help his team keep the scores level.
The cup tie finished all square and in line with competition rules went straight to penalties.
Royston won the shoot-out lottery with fine converted penalties from Jack Bradshaw, Ryan Ingrey, Kaan Fehmi and Reece Dobson with St Neots missing one and Russo making a quality diving save from another, making the penalties final score 4-2.
The Crows progress to the next round with an impressive scalp tucked in their belt.
Team: Russo, Endacott, Adams, Wharton, Bradshaw, Bridges Scott (Powell), Mentis (Bridges Stuart), Lockett, Hart (Fehmi), Dobson, Ingrey. Subs not used – Watters, Hammond.