THIRD QUALIFYING ROUND
Bury Town 4
Richmond Borough 0
Richard Wilkins has set his sights on the FA Cup first round after a comprehensive victory over Hampton and Richmond Borough.
A brace from tireless striker Sam Reed was added to by Luke Ingram and an own goal from centre-half Billy Jeffreys as the Ram Meadow outfit progressed through to the final qualifying round of the world’s most famous domestic cup competition where they will face high-flying Blue Square Bet South side Dorchester Town.
One more victory after that would see the Blues reach the first round proper for the second time in five seasons, with the possibility of greater Football League scalps, something a Bury Town manager Wilkins wants, more for his players than anything else.
“It was a great team performance and that is the best we have played all season for sure,” he said.
“It is nice to win but I really enjoyed the game because of the way we played and I am really proud of the lads.
“They are a very strong team in our division and so to beat them so convincingly is a massive achievement for us.
“I thought our attacking play was fantastic to watch, the defence were very rarely tested and Marcus didn’t really have to make a save.
“Our shape was very solid and most of the time it comes down to individual battles, which I think we mostly won.
“I can’t really pick anyone out for individual praise because it was a fantastic team performance all over the pitch.
“It was good experience to be involved in the first round proper in the past and that is where we want to be again.
“It is all about players at this level playing in the first round proper, that is the biggest thing and to be able to say you’ve played against a professional club is great.
“For non-League players to be able to play at that stage and get someone decent is what dreams are made of.”
The hosts got off to a flying start and broke the deadlock after just nine minutes.
Sam Reed charged down Darren Powell’s attempted clearance before racing through on goal to slip a right footed shot under the onrushing Rodney Chiweshe and into the net.
The visitors responded after 23 minutes as JJ Bates’ volleyed effort was easily saved by Marcus Garnham, before Bury doubled heir advantage 10 minutes later in controversial fashion.
The previously injured Lee Reed was waved back into play and as the home side countered from a corner, they created a three on two situation.
Reed played in his brother Sam who in turn laid the ball across for Ingram inside the area who smashed a right foot effort across goal and into the far left corner, giving Bury a strong lead going into the break.
After 12 minutes of the re-start Bury should have extended their lead further as Sam Reed smartly fed in strike partner John Sands beyond the visitors defence, but with just the keeper to beat, Sands scuffed his right foot shot wide of the bottom left corner.
However, eight minutes later, Bury grabbed a third as Sam Reed netted his second of the afternoon, reacting quickest to Ingram’s header coming back off the cross bar to fire home.
It should have been four moments later, but Sands’ wasteful finishing continued.
Daniel Hitching’s throw from the right hand side was flicked on by Connor Hall to Sands just five yards out, but he somehow managed to volley over.
However, there was a fourth for the hosts after 78 minutes when Ingram’s driven cross from the right-hand side was inadvertently sent beyond the helpless Chiweshe by Jeffreys.
There was just enough time for Garnham to be tested for the first time as he pushed Charlie Moone’s vicious strike round the right hand post, keeping his clean sheet in tact to cap off a comfortable afternoon for the hosts.