Pilgrims 3-1 Oldbury United
The Pilgrims safely negotiated their first hurdle in this season's FA Cup campaign with an easy win against Oldbury United of the Midland Football Alliance. With injuries to Paul Watts, Mark Rawle and Andy Kiwomya, Boston recalled on-loan striker Kevin Slinn from Stamford to play up front alongside Mickey Nuttell. From the start it was clear that Oldbury had no answer to the threat of the Pilgrims' rising star David Norris. In the first minute he almost put the Pilgrims in front with a teasing curler of a shot which just crept the wrong side of the post after deceiving Steve Johnson in the Oldbury goal. Another good chance came a few minutes later when Gowshall and Stanhope combined well to let Norris send in a telling cross towards Nuttell. The ball was headed down into the path of Costello whose shot was somewhat fortuitously blocked. It wasn't long before the Pilgrims took the lead. Norris was clearly tripped when running into the area and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Paul WILSON dispatched the spot kick with his customary relish. Mickey Nuttell saw a powerful header hit the bar before NORRIS put Boston further ahead on thirty three minutes. A corner rebounded out to Norris on the left edge of the area from where he rifled his shot into the far corner of the net. Five minutes later RENNIE scored Boston's third goal with a well placed free kick following a further foul on Norris. Just on half time the Pilgrims had a strong claim for a penalty when Norris appeared to be pushed to the floor, but the referee was unmoved.
For the second half Boston brought on veteran Martin Hardy to replace Joby Gowshall. With the game already won the play began to look more like shooting practice at a training session. Shots were soon raining in on the Oldbury goal. First Costello fired just over, then Boston were gifted another penalty following a handball. Rather than just blasting the ball, this time Wilson tried to place his kick, but it was well read by the keeper who made a good save. The keeper also showed fine form a few minutes later to deflect a Nuttell header over the bar. At the other end Paul Bastock decided he wanted some action. So when he received a back pass he sidefooted the ball straight to Oldbury's No. 10 Matthew Richards. Bastock then made an acrobatic save to recover from his initial mistake. Childs, Slinn, Norris and Stanhope all came close to increasing the Pilgrims' lead before Oldbury scored a shock goal. Neil HESSON slipped the ball into the net following a defensive mix-up. Oldbury brought on some fresh legs, using all three of their allowed substitutes and could have narrowed the gap in the scores further when Brendan McArthy was put in the clear. However, he shot tamely at Bastock. The Pilgrims brought on Timby for Slinn and Sedlam for Childs before the game finally ran out of steam.
United team: 1. Paul Bastock, 2. Joby Gowshall, 3. Paul Wilson, 4. Colin Hoyle, 5. Peter Costello, 6. David Rennie, 7. Andrew Stanhope, 8. Gary Childs, 9. Mickey Nuttell, 10. Kevin Slinn, 11. David Norris, 12. Gary Porter, 14. Martin Hardy, 15. Neil Timby, 16. Jason Sedlam, 17. Nick Maddison.