Match Preview: Bewdley Town (h)

Hinckley AFC take on higher level opposition for the first time this season when Bewdley Town visit Kirkby Road in the Isuzu FA Vase second round qualifying.

Last season brought about Hinckley’s best Vase run since 2018, including a win over higher level Cogenhoe United on the way to a loss at Belper United in the second round.

Now they’ll hope to replicate that Cogenhoe win over another step five side as Bewdley Town make the trip to Kirkby Road.

The opposition

Bewdley sit 16th in the Midland League’s Premier Division, with Atherstone Town and Wolverhampton Casuals currently keeping them out of the relegation places. They have won one and drawn one of their opening eight league games, and picked up an impressive point at Whitchurch Alport last week to end a run of four straight league defeats. Their only win was a big one, when they put four past Tividale in late August, while they also beat Daventry Town 7-3 in the extra preliminary round of the FA Cup.

Bewdley have conceded the most goals in the division, but have also hit 22 of their own in all competitions so far. Only two sides have kept a clean sheet against them while they are yet to keep one themselves. With nine goals in ten games including an FA Cup hat-trick, Ben Worthington has been their biggest threat this term while Ethan Tivey has four.

The Worcestershire outfit were handed a bye in the opening round of the FA Vase, and so are making their first appearance in this season’s competition.

Previous meetings

None! This will be the first meeting between Hinckley and Bewdley, the sides never having played each other before.

From the dressing room

“It’ll be a good test for us against a side from the league above. We’ve watched them a few times and had a bit of different footage from teams in that league. They’re not having the best of times this season, but that league is tough. We’ve got to prepare properly. We know what they’re good at and what they’re not so good at, and we’ll try and exploit that.

But mostly, it’s about us, and the way we approach and attack games. We couldn’t be in a better position going into this. It’s nice to have a break from the league, and can we get through another round? That Monday afternoon when you’re waiting for the draw to come out is exciting,  whatever level you’re at. FA competitions are fantastic and we want to have as much of a run as we can.”

Courtney Hunter-Belford

Key info

If the tie is level after 90 minutes, the match goes straight to a penalty shoot-out. There is no replay or extra time. The winners will advance to the first round proper, the draw for which will be made on Monday. The winning club picks up £725 from the FA’s prize pool, the losing side collects £225.

Adults: £6

Concessions: £4

Under 16s: £2

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