James bags brace to send Fenmen through

Wisbech Town at home to Huntington Town. By the end of the first half Huntington were 4 - 0 up.
Wisbech Town at home to Huntington Town. By the end of the first half Huntington were 4 - 0 up.

Ashington 1,

Wisbech Town 2

Wisbech Town mined a superb FA Carlsberg Vase Fourth Round win at The Colliers on Saturday thanks to a Tom James brace.

The Fenmen are now the final United Counties League side remaining in the competition.

James struck at the beginning and end of the tie, winning it with a penalty after the hosts had levelled in first-half stoppage time.

Wisbech joint boss Dick Creasey said: “It was not a smash and grab raid – we deserved to win. I was delighted with the performance, one which we haven’t put in of late.”

The visitors were boosted by an eighth-minute free-kick from James.

“It was a good free-kick and Tom hit it well,” Creasey said.

“He’s not a biggish lad but he can strike it well. For ten minutes we were okay but for the next 20 minutes they were the better side – you’re always going to get that.”

Wisbech co-manager Paul Cousins revealed he used YouTube ahead of the tie at the Northern League Division One side.

Cousins told the BBC: “I’ve seen a lot of clips of them on YouTube and other clips that some people have given to me.”

Creasey said of the home equaliser just before the break: “We went in at half-time very flat and wondering whose marker it was for their goal, but we said we have got to get that out of their system. We had to regroup.

“In the second half I kept saying to Spaff, our physio: ‘We’ve got the grip-hold here.’ The penalty was a stone-waller, it was good refereeing as well.

“You see the foul, he’s not blowing, and I thought it fizzled out but then he gave it. For a split-second I thought he wasn’t going to give it.

“There was no argument about the decisions for our goals.”

Goalkeeper Carl Mackney, standing in for the cup-tied Lea Jordan, was praised by Creasey: “Carl made a great save with five minutes to go. He was in mid-air with the ball going under him but he flicked it with a strong hand and it went over the bar.”

Wisbech fielded on the bench Carl Davis, who has been playing up front for Tydd St Mary and came on in midweek in the Ridgeons Cambs Invitation Cup defeat at home to CRC.

“He’s 21 or 22 years old and has got a good physique: six foot two,” Creasey said. “He asked me if he could come to the club on trial. Being a body or two short he was with us over the weekend.”

Wisbech: Mackney, Docherty, Johnson, Cousins, Spafford, Millson, Reid, White, Battersby, James, Lunn (Tricks). Subs unused: Davis, Fisher, Whyatt, Stewart (GK).