BRACKLEY Town have been drawn away to Guiseley in the first round of the FA Trophy following their 2-0 win over Thurrock.
Identical goals in each half was enough for Brackley to see off Thurrock in a bruising encounter at Ship Lane.
Wingers Glenn Walker and Owen Story were marked men from the start but stuck to their work on an uncompromising afternoon that tested the visitors to the full.
Both goals were made by Walker – the first from the right as he turned defenders inside-out to deliver a deep cross for Marvin Robinson to head home on 41 minutes. The second goal sealed the win with seven minutes remaining as Walker advanced up the left, this time finding Gary Mulligan at the far post whose header doubled the lead.
In between the goals, Thurrock created several chances themselves. Robbie Norris struck the bar with a fine shot before the interval and after the break, experienced centre-back Stuart Thurgood hit a thunderous drive just over before manager’s son Charlie Stimson fired in a shot on the turn that was also off target.
The Fleet felt aggrieved at a number of the referee’s decisions, as did Saints when James Clifton appeared to be felled in the penalty area after a fine run on 18 minutes but Stuart Butler saw this differently.
Two unsavoury incidents left their mark as first, Owen Story was clattered by Stimson in a wild challenge that saw the striker get nowhere near the ball before, on 67 minutes, Fleet defender Matt Turpin lunged dangerously at substitute Gary Mulligan bringing the only possible riposte of a straight red card.
Thurrock’s fighting spirit and fitness held through to the end but Saints were worthy winners and progress through to face Guiseley on Satruday, November 24.
Brackley Town: Turley, Clifton, McDonald, Odhiambo (Sandy 85), Corcoran, Nisevic, Story, Solkhon, Robinson, Diggin (Mulligan 75), G.Walker (Winters 85).
Subs unused: Brady, Jones.
Thurrock: Hughes, Jones, Walster, Griffin, Turpin, Thurgood, Wanadio, Norris, Griffiths (Ibe 62), Stimson (Onyenmah 68), Honesty.
Subs unused: Jefferies, Viner, Goode.
Referee: Mr S Butler
Assistants: Mr N Dunn and Mr R Joss