Continuing with my theme of the past few rounds of the FA Cup i am again going to start with anything but the 2 lowest rank western sides left in the competition at this stage. Without sounds like a tennis umpire the FA Cup has come up with a 6-2, 6-2 pairing.
Starting with the lowest Uhlsport Hellenic League Division One West step 6 side Hook Norton welcome National League South step 2 side Weston Super Mare. After causing the upset of the last round beating Eastbourne United Hook Norton are on cloud nine to be welcoming the national league side. They occupy a false position in the Division one west having only played 3 games so far in the division with this being their 5th FA Cup fixture. It will be a tricky afternoon for the Seagulls who will be hoping to emulate their best FA Cup performance to date by reaching the 2nd round in 2003/04 but on a tight uneven pitch no doubt Hook Norton will try to use to their advantage.
Bodmin Town of the South West Peninsula Premier League have also drawn National League South side Bath City. Bodmin have made a strong start to their opening 9 games and have not tasted defeat yet so will be in good spirits going into the game. However Bath have also made a strong start and occupy a playoff spot in the National League South
2nd Qualifying Round Giant Killers Kidlington of the Uhlsport Hellenic League Premier have to wait until Sunday to travel to Whaddon Road to face National League North side Gloucester City. Tim Harris’s side have reached the first round of the competition for the past few years having been narrowly beaten by Leyton Orient and Fleetwood respectively at that stage so will be bidding to emulate this again this season, it should be a welcome break from a tough league campaign start for the tigers.
Oxford City of Step 2 have a point to prove against step 4 side and repeat offenders of an FA Cup upset Shortwood United who knocked them out at this stage last season. Oxford have made a strong start to their National League South campaign occupying a playoff spot and will have home advantage so the odds are once again staked against shortwood to pull of another shock.
Slimbridge have gone about their business quietly on the FA Cup after clocking up the miles in the previous round to beat Southern Counties East Premier Division side Greenwich Brough 3-2. They visit Southern League Division One South West Counterparts North Leigh whom which they have previous this already loosing 4-2 in an early August fixture.
And finally Southern League Premier Cirencester Town visit Step 4 and League below Central Division Petersfield Town. The “Centurions” have made a good start to their campaign and will fancy themselves against lower league opposition to progress into the 4th round qualifying..
Keep an eye out for the usual shocks in this round, there is sure to be a Step 2 side toppled by a lower tiered side, cant see too many myself however.