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Match Report

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Aylesbury’s cup interest was ended for another year as they exited the Berks & Bucks Senior Cup at the hands of Didcot Town, who the Ducks have now failed to beat in three attempts having drawn both league encounters with the Railwaymen this season.

On a damp and misty evening at The Meadow, two defensive mistakes gave the visitors opportunities which were both readily punished with well-taken goals, but United still had enough chances to get a result from the game.

The Ducks registered the first attempt on the game when Anthony Ball’s deep cross found Ty Deacon who had to strain to head goalwards where it dropped just off target and just out of reach of the closing in Greg Williams.

Four minutes later though, and Didcot went ahead. One long ball forwards left Jordan Jenkins exposed with George Reid at the back, and the winger easily got the better of the defender before making slipping the ball past Jack Hopwood. 1-0 Didcot

Diddy could have had a second when good work from Reid again saw him bustle his way through the defence before the ball rolled on for Jack Dark who could only lash an effort wide.

After a long range effort from Reid brought little concern, Aylesbury finally began to come into their own, and at the half’s midway point Ty Deacon wasted a glorious chance when he blazed over from eight-yards after a low ball into the area was dummied (intentionally or accidentally was up for debate) by Harry Jones.

Goalkeeper Leigh Bedwell had nearly been embarrassed earlier in the game when letting the greasy ball squirm out of his grasp when catching it high, but he made an excellent save to preserve his side’s lead on 26 minutes. Keaton August’s driven cross dropped to Lewis Osborne in the box but his well struck volley was tipped wide by Bedwell.

The resulting corner was rolled to Jake Bewley who swept an instant shot over the bar, and although subsequent corner kicks came to nothing, it came as little surprise that a flag kick lead to Aylesbury’s equaliser.

Max Hercules’ delivery from the left wasn’t sufficiently dealt with, and fell to new boy August on the edge of the area who powered home an unstoppable drive to mark his full debut with a goal. 1-1

The Ducks were now well on top and Osborne saw a fierce shot well blocked by Luke Carnell, and when Hercules retrieved the ball his dangerous inswinging cross had to be tipped over the bar.

More good work by Ball and August on the right hand side produced another corner kick, but the late first half dominance wasn’t to pay off as the sides went in for the interval level.

Half-time: Aylesbury 1-1 Didcot

United looked keen to start the second period the way they’d ended the first, and early on Deacon helped the ball on to Harry Jones but he fluffed his finish from close range, before Hercules curled a 35-yard free kick the wrong side of the upright.

Ten minutes into the second half and another good chance went begging when Deacon latched onto a well aimed through ball but slotted wide with only Bedwell to beat.

Aylesbury were made to pay for their missed chances when Didcot struck with their first meaningful attempt of the second period. A free kick played into the box saw a mix-up between defenders leaving it for each other, and when the ball reached Cameron McNeill he still had plenty to do but managed to crash a high shot in past Hopwood from a tight angle. 2-1 Didcot

The response was a triple substitution that saw Melvy N’Somi, Mark Riddick and Sonny French enter the fray, and it didn’t take long for the latter - in fine goalscoring form this season - to be involved.

Bewley’s cross from the left was headed goalwards by French, where Bedwell did well to keep it out, and French was unlucky with the follow up which hit the post then goalkeeper before rebounding to safety.

United plugged away in the closing stages but found themselves repeatedly frustrated by a resolute Didcot defence, and it was the visitors who came closest to scoring late on when a ball whipped in from the right was met Tom Stanley on the volley with an effort that went just over.

Aylesbury’s only sight of goal before the final whistle - despite a full five minutes of stoppage time being played - was a long ranger from Harry Jones that comfortably cleared the bar, and that was that.

A disappointing end to the Berks & Bucks Cup campaign, and no opportunity for a tie against Football League opponents in the quarter finals, but we wish Didcot Town well.