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Match Report

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Aylesbury continued their miserable recent FA Cup record with a third season of elimination at the Preliminary Round stage following a hugely disappointing result at home to Biggleswade United.

Facing a team from the Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division, the Ducks would have fancied their chances of claiming the £1925 prize money, but their inability to convert their chances saw them come unstuck by a winning goal three minutes from the end.

One change for the Ducks saw fit again Ollie Hogg replace the injured Bruno Brito, with Lea Coulter pushed forwards into attack as a result.

The hosts made a typically bright opening to match the August sunshine, Reece Cameron first to go close when he flashed in a cross that eventually skipped just past the upright after Coulter was just unable to get a telling touch.

Hogg planted an eighth minute shot over the bar, before Taylor Collins spurned a glorious chance for the opener when Coulter and Jordon Frederick combined allowing the latter to play the ball though, but Collins saw his shot saved down low by the quick-to-advance Tom Wyant.

A good strike from Cameron was also saved by Wyant, prior to Biggleswade fashioning their first opening of the game when David Iweduino rode a challenge in the area but saw his shot stopped by Zaki Oualah.

The visitors were visibly growing into the game as time passed, and they went close again when Charlie Joy picked up a loose ball and placed an effort just wide.

That effort came sandwiched between two half chances for the Ducks, with Cameron blazing a 30-yard free kick high off target and Hogg’s corner was flicked across goal by Ryan Kinnane.

Joy was joyless again when a big chance for Biggleswade went begging on 28 minutes, a corner kick headed out as far as Joy on the edge of the box who instantly half volleyed just over the bar.

The half ended with the Ducks hitting the bar through Collins, albeit after the whistle had contentiously been blown when Lea Coulter was adjudged to have fouled goalkeeper Wyant after the stopper had charged a long way from his area.

Half-time: Aylesbury 0-0 Biggleswade

Aylesbury might have gone ahead within five minutes of the restart when Cameron crossed from the right, the ball coming all the way across to Collins who could only bundle over from close range.

It was to be the striker’s last action of the game, as he was withdrawn due to injury and replaced by Alvin Rajaram.

Two minutes later and Hogg was next to threaten, driving forwards onto a square ball inside from Coulter but drilling his shot narrowly wide.

Some great midfield work by Hogg then saw him win the ball back before playing Coulter through who seemed to have been tugged back inside the box, the referee quick to wave away the penalty claims directed his way.

Once again Aylesbury had been unable to make a dominant start count, and a string of mistakes nearly cost them as Coulter gave the ball away before a hesitant Kinnane was beaten to the ball by Iweduino whose low drive was well turned wide by Oualah.

Joy wrapped up his hat-trick of misses when a cross in from the right dropped kindly for him but he smashed the ball over.

Aylesbury then spurned their best opening to that point when substitute Sonny French fed Rajaram coming inside from the left, but he was denied by a good sprawling save by the impressive Wyant who was quick off his line once again.

The resulting corner was met by Hercules whose effort was on target after Wyant had flapped, but cleared before it reached the goal. Another corner less than two minutes later again saw the soaring Hercules on the end of it, but he could only guide his header over the bar.

The Ducks were once more the creators of their own downfall as a mistake by Kinnane gave the ball away, where it was played in to substitute Jake O’Neill who drew another good save from Oualah.

With the sides evenly matched and seemingly unable to convert their chances, the game had looked set to be heading for a midweek replay, only for disaster to strike for Aylesbury.

Another mistake at the back this time was punished, as Charlie Black rode a challenge before producing the coolest of finishes that snuck just inside Oualah’s near post. 1-0 Biggleswade

With three minutes remaining it was the killer blow, but there was still time for a Jake Bewley free kick to agonisingly come back off the crossbar.

French saw a low effort held as the ball dropped to him in the box following a throw in, and when a free kick into the area was headed on by Hercules for Stanbridge, who was unable to bundle the ball over the line, it was clear that United’s luck was out and it just wasn’t to be their day.