K&P Royals bow out of FA Cup

Kirkley and Pakefield FC's headquarters at Walmer Road, Lowestoft.

Kirkley and Pakefield FC's headquarters at Walmer Road, Lowestoft. - Credit: Mick Howes

Little Oakley 2, Kirkley & Pakefield 1

For last Saturday’s FA Cup 1st Qualifying Round match K&P travelled to play Essex Senior League side Little Oakley, who put out higher league opposition in the previous round.

The Royals, already with an under-strength team with five regular first teamers unavailable, were dealt a blow just before kick-off when keeper Jordan Smith injured his thigh in the warm up and had to be replaced in goal by Liam Bruce.

A good crowd of 241 saw the home team have the first chance in the third minute with a shot that was well saved by Bruce.

With the ‘Acorns’ looking the more likely to score, good defending and a couple of fine saves by stand-in keeper Bruce prevented that.

But on 39 minutes the Royals conceded a penalty after the keeper brought an Oakley player down on the edge of the area, and Danny Garrad converted.

Poor K&P defending let in Greg Rodger to finish well and score the ‘Acorns’ second in the 44th minute.

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The Royals made an early substitution in the second half with Goldspink replaced by Macauley Holt on 55 minutes.

Lewis Flower then cleared off the line with the keeper beat. Lewis Hammond, back after a month out injured, was then replaced by young Joshua Harvey.

Lively winger Quintino Nbuque was crudely brought down and injured and had to leave the field with Louis Tillett replacing him in the 70th minute.

A Jack Herbert foul led to a free kick on the edge of the 18 yard box but this was well saved by the keeper.

The Royals finally started to press more with Holt instrumental, and after a crossfield run he was brought down outside the area.

Conroy's free kick was superbly headed home by centre back Lewis Flower to give the Royals some hope with six minutes plus remaining, but the equaliser was not to be, with the home team deserving their victory.

With a bye in the FA Vase 1st Qualifying Round it’s back to Thurlow Nunn Premier Division League action this Saturday at Walmer Road for K&P with Thetford Town the visitors (3pm).

Next Tuesday evening (September 14), the Royals travel to Emerald Park for a local derby against Gorleston in the league, 7.45pm.

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