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Emirates FA Cup: Hungerford Town fall short against National League side Bromley

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Hungerford Town’s Emirates FA Cup journey is over after a narrow 2-1 defeat to Bromley at Bulpit Lane.

In front of a crowd of 722, the hosts took the lead when Ryan Seager converted a penalty just after the half-hour mark, but James Alabi made it level just before the break.

Both sides pushed for a second in the second-half and it was the National League side Bromley who got it, with Michael Cheek coming off the bench to score and prove to be the match winner.

Callum Willmoth
Callum Willmoth

Hungerford boss Danny Robinson made one change to his starting XI, from Tuesday’s 2-0 win over Braintree, as George Smith came in for Jake Evans.

The first opportunity of the game fell to the visitors as a long throw from captain Chris Bush was met by the head of Omar Sowunmi, who headed over the bar.

The pacey Corey Whitely created Bromley’s next chance as his swerving effort from distance nearly found its way into the top corner.

Hungerford keeper Luke Cairney had to deny Luke Coulson and Joe Partington on two occasions, but it was the home side that went ahead.

Partington got the wrong side of Sol Wanjau-Smith as he brought the Crusaders forward down in the penalty area.

From there, Seager made no mistake and sent Reice Charles-Cook the wrong way to open the scoring.

Bromley almost scored instantly as George Alexander hit the post from close range, before blazing over the crossbar from inside the box.

Seager then had an acrobatic effort saved by the Bromley keeper, a minute before they equalised.

Kyle Bailey played the ball back to Cairney, he beat one man but his touch took the ball away from him and Alabi had a simple tap-in.

In the second-half, Cairney had to be called upon twice.

A deflection off James Rusby saw the Town keeper kick the ball clear, before he saved excellently from Alexander as the Bromley forward attempted to lob the ball past him.

The pressure from Bromley was paid off with 16 minutes remaining as substitute Cheek scored the winning goal.

After a long throw, the ball fell to the forward and his acrobatic effort looped over Cairney and into the bottom corner of the net.

Despite a late flurry of pressure, Hungerford were unable to salvage a draw and send the game to a reply.

Although they tasted defeat, Robinson’s side should be extremely proud of how they performed against an in-form side from the league above.

His Crusaders squad will have to dust themselves down and look to bounce back when they return to National League South action at Concord Rangers on Saturday.

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