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Welwyn Garden City FC

Home of the "Citizens" - Established 1921

The BP Mitchell Stadium, Herns Lane, Welwyn Garden City, Herts, AL7 1TA

WGC progressed through to the next round of the SSML Challenge Trophy on Wednesday evening following a tough encounter with Crawley Green, unbeaten leaders of Div 1.


With the hosts flying high, having taken maximum points from their opening seven matches this was always going to be a stern test for the Citizens and so it proved to be.


The opening half hour was a pretty even affair with both teams having chances to open the scoring, Ashley Kersey having two good opportunities to put WGC ahead only to be denied by Dean Bull in the Crawley Green goal.


It was Kersey, who did put WGC into the lead in the 37th minute when he beat two defenders in the box before unleashing an unstoppable drive past keeper Bull.


The same player should have put the visitors two goals to the good just before the half time interval when he got clear of the home back four only to have his shot blocked by Bull.


Boss Adam Fisher made two substitutions within 10 minutes of the re-start with Sam Perrin replacing John McGrandles in defence and midfielder Abel Mudimu replacing a lively Reggie Ross.


Kersey had another excellent chance on the hour when he again broke clear but with only the keeper to beat, he chipped his shot against the base of the post.


A minute later the impressive Nathan Dimmock twisted past two defenders on the edge of the box and his piledriver of a shot was beaten away by Bull for a corner.


Kersey made amends for his earlier misses by putting WGC two ahead in the 73th minute, when he again got clear on half-way line to go on and slip the ball under the diving Bull.


Just when it looked as if WGC were heading for a comfortable finish central defender Carl Mensah inadvertently directed a cross into his own net for 2-1, with 11 minutes left.


This sparked the Luton side into life and they drew level two minutes from the end of normal time when Henry Mungwira fired home at the far post, having been left totally unmarked.


With penalty kicks looming - no extra time being played in this competition WGC again broke away and Jason Caswell was upended in the box. Referee McGovern has no hesitation in pointing to the spot.


Josh Bronti stepped up and coolly slotted the ball into the bottom corner for a well deserved victory for WGC, who will now meet more Div 1 opposition in Risborough Rangers at home in the next round - a tie scheduled for Wednesday, November 18.


WGC: Jackson, Lovell, Mensah, McGrandles (Perrin 57), Welsh, Cifuentes, Dimmock, Ross (Mudimu 59), Bronti, Kersey (Samuda 73), Caswell.

Crawley Green FC 2 - 3 Welwyn Garden City FC