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Frome Town 1 - 0 Cribbs: FA Trophy

Updated: Oct 29, 2023

Frome Town progressed to the Second Round of the FA Trophy as they subdued a spirited Cribbs side by a single goal. Injuries, penalties and a red card for appeared to put their cup ambitions in jeopardy, but the BA11 side put an untidy performance behind them to win the tie after the visitors’ skipper Jacob Hodgson headed into his own net from a corner.

As Friday night football returned to Badgers Hill for the first time this season, the overriding feeling around the ground was eagerness to see what lay ahead for this talented Frome side. The fixture with Cribbs threw up a repeat of August’s Southern League curtain-raiser, a match that felt an age away after a thrilling FA Cup run and a generally positive start to the 23/24 season. Danny Greaves kept faith with the side that went down in the wet at Bashley last weekend, only their third defeat this term, naming Reece Rusher in place of Ross Staley and selecting Pierce Mitchell ahead of Matt Wood.

With little to lose, Cribbs showed the ambition going forward that they had lacked back in the summer. The Bristol-based side won countless corners and exhibited some nifty training ground moves from the set-piece. With half an hour played, Phillips and his back three had a test on their hands, marshalling red shirts to deal with the aerial barrage. Despite lacking fluency, Frome did manage to get a foothold in the game, Rusher’s cross dipping just the wrong side of the bar while Maidment ran amok to meet corners and cause havoc in the box. Cribbs were quick to break and the life was sucked out of Badgers Hill when James Ollis, on his hundredth appearance for the Robins, tracked back and twanged his hamstring in a crucial tackle. It was the cruellest of endings for the striker who looks to be out for at least a few weeks - a victim of his own selflessness and hard work in defence.

Cribbs will also rue their misfortune in front of goal. Not long before half-time, the visitors had the ball in the net, only the linesman’s flag for offside bailing the home side out after disarray in the box. The whistle could not come soon enough as Phillips produced a clever block to deny Corrick and keep his side level after a less than ideal first half. The scoreless draw in the summer had been Cribbs’ first game in the Southern League and their form has come on leaps and bounds since. The Bristol-based side sit sixth in the table and, so far this season, are the only outfit to keep the Robins from scoring this season.

The set-piece scrutiny Frome had endured in the first half only got more probing in the second. Rhythm had completely deserted Frome when, minutes after the break, Ross Staley was adjudged to have handled a cross in the box. Badgers Hill has witnessed plenty of lucky moments and breathed sighs of disbelieving relief at various points already this season, but what ensued can only be described as freakish. Penalty-taker Ward-Baptiste pelted his effort into the bar before playing it again as he attempted to score the rebound. Confusion around the ground only turned to relief when the referee hesitantly awarded a free-kick and the red shirts realised they had got away with one.

It buoyed the home side, who began, cautiously, to recover a semblance of composure. A corner won with just over twenty minutes to play saw Hodgson head into own net and give Frome an unlikely lead, one as undeserved as it was fortuitous. But the tussle was to take another turn as Kane Simpson flew into a Cribbs player enthusiastically to retrieve possession and received a straight red card to the discontent of the 408 in attendance. Ten minutes to play, a lead to protect and an aerial blitz from the visitors who, knock as they might, failed to exploit their advantage before the referee called time.

Not pretty was the assessment from Danny Greaves, but it was a significant victory secured despite the potential stumbling blocks. To win ugly and show their streetsmarts will be as satisfying to this group of players as the impending weekend off. Another Monday lunchtime spent battling the FA’s website server will be the foremost thought in the minds of the fans as the Second Round draw and the thought of a possible ‘glamour’ tie with one of the incoming Step 2 clubs approaches. Whichever opponent is pulled out of the hat, the squad’s focus will return to the league, next week’s visit up the M5 to Malvern the first on the manager’s mind. But, surely, even for the most pragmatic of supporters, still being in a national cup competition as November beckons, that’s what all this lower-league football nonsense is about…?!

Match report and live updates by Ryan Atkins and Zeb Baker-Smith


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Gerry Urch
Gerry Urch
Oct 31, 2023

Well, we’ve landed a plumb home draw against a side two tiers higher than us, from the Vanarama South League – Worthing. They’ve beaten high- flying Bath City twice in recent times so look a decent enough side. They sit 8th in their league. We beat Oxford City, from the same league, at ‘The Hill’ a couple of years ago, so we do have a squeak with home advantage.

Their average gate is around 1,400 and so they should bring a few fans from Sussex to boost the gate.

We’ll now have 3 home games in 8 days - Willand (3rd), Westbury (12th) & Worthing - All the ‘W’s! WOW!

That’s going to bring in a few bob for th…


Gerry Urch
Gerry Urch
Oct 29, 2023

I really must mention my wild delight at the new glitzy château - ‘The Corner Flag.’ at the Clubhouse end of ‘The Hill.’

On first sight I thought I was in Vegas or The West End. Then I saw Mr & Mrs Pasty grasping a steak pie and hot dog respectively and the penny dropped that they had moved up the property ladder by some considerable margin and are well on their way to becoming property tycoons and pasty entrepreneurs. No expense is spared – they even have dual menu and tariff board on either side of our new temple of food. This I presume is for people who really can’t believe how cheap the prices are and so, c…


Gerry Urch
Gerry Urch
Oct 28, 2023

The Hill’s surface must have sprouted a hundred four leaf clovers prior to kick off last night.

The Robins were outrageously lucky to win this one. So, Cribbs return to the Shopping Mall with zilch to show for their very fine performance - they look a very fit, fast and powerful unit with skill in abundance – going to their place for the return league game is going to be an up hill task!

How on earth they managed to lose this one is going to haunt them for the rest of the season. A mixture of sheer bad luck and very poor finishing - with the goal gaping on numerous occasions, left them a very exasperated outfit. Th…

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