Gladiators bow out of FA Cup after home defeat

Matlock goalscorer Nathan Joynes (right) takes control against Hinckley. Photo by Andy Duffin.
Matlock goalscorer Nathan Joynes (right) takes control against Hinckley. Photo by Andy Duffin.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

FA Cup Second Qual. Round

Matlock Town 1

Nathan Joynes 70

Hinckley United 3

Anore Gray 44, 89

Tom Byrne 55

Matlock Town: Jon Kennedy, Micky Harcourt, Ben Algar, Liam King, Adam Yates, James Lukic, Chris Bettney (Lee Featherstone 64), TJ Nightingale (Nathan Joynes 37), Ian Holmes, Kris Bowler (Ben Hunter 79), Gareth Davies. Subs not used: James Knowles, Nick Buxton.

Attendance: 411

Ref: M Salisbury (Preston)

MISSED chances cost Matlock dearly in a game they largely dominated against Blue Square North Hinckley who returned to Leicestershire with a flattering victory.

Certainly there was no repeat of the no show against Eastwood in last season’s competition. On another day, the Gladiators might have won comfortably.

It was a good cup tie played in sweltering heat, nobody could complain that the players on both sides had given their all.

But the hosts had only a Nathan Joynes goal to show for their spirited display, that halving Matlock’s deficit with 20 minutes left to set up a grandstand finish.

Hinckley broke quickly in the opening minute from a Matlock corner for Jacob Joyce to hook a difficult chance over the bar.

But then Matlock took over and on ten minutes a 20-yard effort from Liam King skidded narrowly wide after neat approach play from T J Nightingale and Micky Harcourt.

Just two minutes later Hinckley’s Chesterfield-based goalkeeper Dan Haystead flew to his right to superbly tip aside a stinging shot from Chris Bettney.

Defender Charlie Raglan saved Hinckley from possibly going behind on 32 minutes as he did well to cut out an Ian Holmes low cross bound for the unattended Nightingale. From the corner James Lukic’s power-packed header flashed narrowly past Haystead’s left hand post.

Nightingale was forced off with a nasty cut above his eye shortly afterwards which came about when he attempted to glance home a Bettney cross, Joynes coming on.

The best chance of all fell to Holmes in the 40th minute. Unmarked in the box 12-yards out from Bettney’s free-kick he drove tamely straight at Haystead, opting for a sidefoot finish when perhaps he should have been looking to burst the net.

As so often happens, the side under the cosh broke to steal the lead when on 44 minutes, as nobody picked up Anore gray from Richard Lavery’s free-kick and his sliced shot found the corner of the net.

King saw an effort comfortably stopped by Haystead who then dived bravely at Kris Bowler’s feet as the midfielder was set to pull the trigger from Ben Algar’s thoughtful ball.

If Hinckley’s first goal was scruffy, then their second on 55 minutes was top quality and a candidate for goal of the season, with Tom Byrne turning and volleying instantly from nearly 40 yards. The ball flew over Jon Kennedy who was not far off his line and dipped under the bar.

That goal might have killed off most sides but to their credit, Matlock kept on battling. A volley from a lesser distance than Byrne’s cracker from Bowler was blocked, while Kennedy produced a fine diving save to deny Lloyd Kerry to keep Matlock in contention.

Then in a great spell Matlock created four chances and pulled a goal back.

A Gareth Davies free-kick was headed wide by Joynes who then turned quickly to fire in a shot destined for the top corner until Haystead took off to his left to claw the ball over the bar.

Holmes then lifted a shot too high after latching on to King’s slide rule pass, but on 70 minutes, the pressure was rewarded as Joynes drove under Haystead from 12 yards after being set up by Holmes.

Yates, Algar (twice) and King all tested Haystead as Matlock attempted to find an equaliser, but the win was sealed on 89 when Lavery robbed Algar on the half-way line and with Matlock committed to attack, Gray was played clear to hammer the final nail in Matlock’s coffin.