The cruelty of football was in evidence at Creasey Park on Tuesday night as Corby Town rolled up their sleeves and displayed some more of the steel we had seen at Steel Park on Saturday August 25th when, three goals behind at half time, they had clawed their way back into this thrilling FA Cup Preliminary Round tie to force a replay at Creasey Park.
The margins between success and failure can be cigarette paper thin and thus on the 25th August a goalscoring opportunity thwarted by heroic last ditch goalkeeping saw Dunstable go from what would have been a three goal cushion to a solitary goal lead as Corby stormed up the other end and pinched a second goal. The rest, as they say, is history, and not history I intend to dwell on.
On Tuesday night Corby were out of the traps at pace and played the first few minutes forcing Dunstable on to the back foot. Will Hunt was called into action early doors but with John Sonuga back in action after Saturday’s enforced absence, leading the back line, the defence held firm.
Dunstable fans had already raised their arms in celebration when a deft header from Chris Wreh glanced agonisingly wide after 20 minutes and only a minute later, Saul Williams broke free and advanced on goal at pace. Such is Saul’s current goalscoring prowess I’d begun to wonder whether I could get away with another Better Call Saul headline, however before he could get his shot away, he was tackled and Corby survived.
With Corby attacking the car park end, and cheered on by a fair size traveling support, the deadlock was broken on 33 minutes by Joel Carta, who finished a clever move from just inside the box, giving Will no chance.
Back came Dunstable in numbers and in strength. A fierce shot from the impressive Hassan Sheikh could only be parried by Corby keeper, Dan George. An awkward bounce left Erin Amu with work to do to try and grab the equaliser, but this was a night when even with maximum effort applied, Dunstable were going to be denied at every turn.
With Dunstable still looking dangerous and the game nearing half time, Corby got a vital psychological boost as they grabbed a second in added time at the end of the first half.
Worst was to follow as within two minutes of the start of the second half, Ben Bradshaw put Corby three up, only to claim a second eight minutes later.
Dunstable had a mountain to climb. On came Nathan Mullings and Daniel Trif and credit to all the boys in blue for putting in a shift. The game may have been to all intent and purpose but you’d never have thought it by the energy and running on show.
The Match officials after the match paid tribute to the indefatigable Dunstable spirit and competitive nature however I suspect that was scant consolation to Tony, Gareth and the players who had been a hare’s breath away from what would have been a thoroughly well- earned victory back on August 25th.
Town are away on Tuesday 11th September at Chesham Utd in the First round of the Southern League Challenge Cup and then return to League action at home to Aylesbury on Saturday 15th September, kick off 3 pm.
Thanks for your wonderful support.
One Club. One Family. Dunstable Town FC.