Weymouth draw with Banbury in FA Cup classic
BANBURY UNITED 1
WEYMOUTH were held to a 1-1 draw by Banbury United in a fantastic FA Cup first qualifying round tie with Abdulai Baggie handing them a lead in the 35th minute, before Georgio Rasula levelled early in the second half.
The game rarely relented as it started at a furious pace and seldom slowed down with consistent great chances for both sides that was deserving of a late winner but the Terras will instead face a replay on Tuesday night at Banbury.
Weymouth made two changes as Antonio Diaz and Jordan Ngalo came in for Ashley Wells and Callum Buckley.
The first half burst into life early on when Weymouth ran down the right-hand side through Ngalo, who played a lovely ball up to Baggie, the winger then pulling the ball back for Josh Carmichael who crossed in for Brandon Goodship, who narrowly failed to connect.
Banbury should have taken the lead twice in an end-to-end beginning. Firstly, Jordy Ngathe did well to get down the left-hand side and crossed in for Jack Finch, who took a touch inside the box for Rasula to fire wide when he should have put the Puritans in front.
Then, a counter-attack from Banbury drew Jordan Seabright outside of his box to clear the ball but he missed it, allowing Ravi Shamsi an open goal to strike at from 30 yards out, but from a very wide position his shot trickled wide.
Shamsi had a great first half, acting as the key to many of the Banbury counter attacks and frequently supplying the ball to Gregory Kaziboni who was equally influential in the first half.
Banbury goalkeeper James Goff had to be alert to stop dangerous shots from Josh McQuoid and Goodship, who were beginning to find their range.
And the latter nearly broke the deadlock when he forced a superb save from Goff 30 yards out.
Banbury did not seem to heed the warning however, as Weymouth took the lead in the 35th minute.
McQuoid whipped in a furious shot towards goal that Goff could only palm into empty space inside the box but an alert Baggie pounced upon it and fired in, with the shot taking a huge deflection off Charlie Wise who tried to get it clear.
The Puritans responded but found Seabright in commanding form. Firstly, Kaziboni ran into the Terras’ box and fired in a fierce shot that Seabright had to palm over.
Another good counter-attack from the visitors produced a cross into Ricky Johnson who headed back across and on target which Seabright did very well to get down low and palm away.
The first half came to a close with Weymouth 1-0 ahead but with the two sides overall well-matched.
Banbury did not need long to draw level, however.
They had their first opportunity when Kaziboni got down the right-hand side and pulled it back to Johnson lurking near the penalty spot but he blazed over the bar.
Later, an attack saw Ben Thomson foul Rasula and give away a penalty, which Rasula stepped up to hit high to Seabright’s right, levelling the scores.
Baggie and Goodship then worked well down the right-hand side which saw the former slide the ball in towards the latter inside the box who fired just wide.
Chances came in quick succession as Shamsi crossed in towards Kaziboni who could not get a touch from four yards out to take it into the Weymouth net.
Then McQuoid caught Wise in possession inside the Banbury box but Wise recovered to clear the danger.
In the 74th minute Weymouth had a golden chance to take the lead when Baggie broke forward, stole into the box and was fouled by Ngathe to earn a penalty.
However, Goff pulled off a fantastic save to deny Goodship and Banbury swiftly countered.
Kaziboni caused the Weymouth defence problems as he wove his way down the right and across the edge of the box before Jake McCarthy cleared the danger.
Both teams were in inspired form and this was a great example of a thrilling FA Cup tie as the game very rarely slowed down.
Ultimately, the two sides were deadlocked after a highly-entertaining contest that will see Weymouth travel to Banbury for a replay tomorrow (7.45pm).
Terras: Seabright, Ngalo, Diaz (Bentley 83), Carmichael, McCarthy, Zubar, Baggie, Wakefield, Thomson, Goodship, McQuoid.
Subs not used: Davis, Martin, Farrugia, Kendall
Banbury: Goff, Hawtin, Ngathe, Rasulo (Bell 76), Henderson, Wise, Finch, Self, Johnson, Shamsi (Awadh 85), Kaziboni.
Subs not used: Diggin, Whitehead, Gabbidon.