FA Cup: Saints book a home tie with Rugby

Substitute Jack Truelove bagged the third goal for Saints. Photo: Refuel Performance Management
Substitute Jack Truelove bagged the third goal for Saints. Photo: Refuel Performance Management

Newly-appointed Brackley Town manager Kevin Wilkin got off to a winning start as his new charges booked their place in the third qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup.

Saints’ first ever trip to Tooting & Mitcham United for Wilkin’s first game at the helm produced a 3-1 victory and a home tie with Rugby Town in the next round.

Against Ryman South opponents who were competitive but struggled to bridge the gap of two divisions, Saints were always on top and ahead yet never safe especially when Tooting narrowed the deficit late on to set up an anxious finale.

Steve Diggin almost gave the visitors a dream start but his effort after just two minutes was ruled out for offside. Sam Smith gave Saints the lead though after 22 minutes bundling the ball over the line.

But it was not until just after the hour hour mark that Sam Whittall doubled the lead to give Saints some breathing space. Put through by Glenn Walker, the tall midfielder rounded the keeper to finish coolly.

Wilkin will be disappointed that his side let The Terrors back into the game through an 87th minute effort by Leon Lalor-Dell that offered the Ryman South side a glimmer of hope. But that was finally snuffed out in stoppage-time when substitute Jack Truelove bagged the third goal with a fine individual effort.