Pictures and captions kindly supplied by David Evans
Walsall Wood’s FA Cup hopes were dashed at the hands of Tividale on Saturday (19th August 2017) who beat the home side one-nil – much to the disappointment of the Oak Park faithful.
Bill Shaw was there and somewhat perplexed:
The report says it all I’m afraid, after the first 45 minutes a one goal defeat was always on the cards. It wasn’t a fair result, but that’s football.
FA Cup Preliminary Round
Walsall Wood 0 v 1 Tividale
Only Wood will know how it’s Tividale who are in Mondays draw, Wood totally dominated the first half but wasted a host of chances. The visitors joined in with how to miss chances early in the second half. This continued from both sides until on 79 minutes Tividale substitute Dan Hill hammered home a left wing cross from Curtis Cocking.
Wood started like a house on fire, Peter Till racing clear in the first minute, his low driven cross inches ahead of Tony Clarke. A minute later Joey Butlin was found in the centre of the box, he calmly set up Clarke, keeper Ryan Cheshire saving with his feet. On five minutes Till cut in from wide right and hit a low cross shot wide. It was Till again on 15 minutes released wide right his cross taken off the head of Andrew Westwood by keeper Cheshire. Three minutes later an intricate move through the centre ended with Butlin setting Clarke free in the right of the box, skipper Karl Gardner saving the day with a superbly timed challenge. Five minutes on Dale Taylor found Butlin who cleverly released Clarke to cut back inside only to have his shot blocked. Next Jordan Fitzpatrick and Clarke combined down the left, Clarke racing into the box Gardner again to the rescue at the expense of a corner. From the flag kick a scramble developed with shots being charged down or blocked before the ball was eventually cleared.
Highly professional footage of the match shot and edited for Wood TV by the remarkably professional Russell Smith, and used with his permission – Thanks mate!
Another well worked move down the left on 30 minutes involving Butlin and Fitzpatrick saw Butlin make the byeline, fire in a low near post cross, Cheshire down to deny Clarke. Five minutes on skipper Darren Campion released Clarke wide left, his low cross was collected by Butlin on the right of the box but he was crowded out by a posse of defenders.
A minute later a ball cut wide to Tom Hurdman saw him cross to the far post, the ball landing on the roof of the Wood net.
Normal service was soon restored as on 39 minutes Westwood hit a low left wing cross that flew across the face of the goal, Till collecting the ball wide right before teeing up Taylor to hit a first time cross shot just too high.
Then on 42 minutes Darragh Bustin powered into the Wood box from wide left, his vicious low cross shot pushed away by Ransome as the whole ground thought no, football surely isn’t that cruel.
Within seven minutes of the restart Butlin raced into the left of the box, his low cross bounced off a defender and Cheshire made an easy save. A minute later from a right wing corner Clarke put a header just over.
A minute later a counter attack saw Bustin race into the left of the box, his low cross bouncing in front of Chris Bladen who could only shin the ball to the right. Then on 60 minutes Liam Wilkinson raced into the Wood box wide right, forced wide by keeper Ransome he rolled a cross shot across the face of the goal.
In the space of the next 15 minutes Wood continued to batter the visitors goal, Till saw Cheshire push away his low drive, Taylor fired wide of the right hand post before on 74 minutes substitute Lewis Taylor Boyce was found on the right of the box, he beat two defenders before firing in a rising near post drive that Cheshire saved at the second attempt.
A minute later Tividale substitute Dan Smith made the left byeline, his low cross just too far ahead of Tyree Clarke. The deadlock was broken four minutes later, Curtis Cocking raced into the left of the Wood box, crossed low into the middle for Smith to sweep Tividale ahead.
Wood were almost level immediately, a right wing corner was powered goalwards from the head of Campion, the ball bounced down off the underside of the bar with Cheshire beaten, Campion was first to the loose bouncing ball, his awkward header into the grateful hands of the keeper.
Tividale worked hard to close down space in the last few minutes but on 90 a flowing left wing move saw Clarke released into the left of the box, he beat the advancing Cheshire but heroic defending saw the ball cleared off the line. The final action saw Campion deliver a left wing free kick into the box, the ball half cleared to Fitzpatrick left of centre, his howitzer drive bounding off the outside of the left hand post as the final whistle blew.
A heroic rear-guard performance by Tividale, only they will know how they are going through to the next round. To be brutally honest, Wood could have scored 10 but they didn’t, they wasted a host of chances paying the ultimate penalty in the end.
It’s league action on Tuesday 22nd with Heather St. Johns the visitors before Saturday 26th sees Atherstone Town at the Wood, again in league action.
Walsall Wood – Ransome, Taylor, Campion (captain), Slater, Hurren, Tolley, Till, Westwood, Butlin, Clarke, Fitzpatrick, L. Harris, Taylor Boyce, McFarlane, Deakin, Okojie, Faultless.
Tividale– Cheshire, Hurdman, Bustin, Gardner (captain), Watts, Wells, Wilkinson, Cocking, Bladen, Clarke, Lawley, Jones, Smith, Hill, Walker, Hartley, Welding, Handley.=
As ever, thanks to Bill, David and Russell for the report – always appreciated – for The Good of the Wood!