Match Preview
Royston Town v Boreham Wood
Saturday 14th December 2019, 3:00
The Garden Walk, FA Trophy

On Saturday, Boreham Wood make our second trip to the Garden Walk in the space of five days, where we will match up against Royston Town, this time in the First Round Proper of the FA Trophy.

In the previous fixture on Tuesday night, Royston secured their place in the next round of the Herts Senior Cup when they beat a youthful Wood side four goals to nil.

Wood fielded a mixed side made up from the PASE Academy and First Team, with some experienced players featuring who have lacked significant minutes in recent weeks. However, a much different starting XI is expected to take the field on Saturday as we hope to progress to the next round.

THE CONTEXT

The Wood gave First Team debuts to several academy boys, seven to be precise, and even though it wasn’t the result we wanted, valuable experience was still gained, and the young boys would have learned a lot.

Royston Town though ran out deserved winners as they were the better side on the night and played the wet and windy conditions perfectly.

ROYSTON TOWN RECENT FORM

Royston currently play their football in the Southern Premier Central Division and sit in a respectable 6th place, just outside the play off positions with a slightly worse goal difference than 5th placed Coalville Town.

The win for the hosts on Tuesday night means that they have lost just once in their last 12 games in all competitions and haven’t lost at home in eight matches.

Having scored eight goals in their previous two games, the Wood back line will need to be aware of the threat that the step three side possess within their ranks.

Royston are no strangers to beating sides in higher divisions as they beat league leaders of the National League South Wealdstone 3-2 away from home in the previous round of the FA Trophy, and will come into this game with full of confidence.

CONNECTION BETWEEN THE CLUBS

Looking ahead to Saturday’s fixture, we look back at a few connections between the two clubs in terms of ex-Boreham Wood players now plying their trade at Garden Walk, namely Ben Martin, Daniel Braithwaite and Chris Watters.

Central defender Ben Martin signed for Boreham Wood midway through the 2014/15 season. His short time at Meadow Park was extremely successful as Wood won promotion to the National League via the NLS play offs, beating Whitehawk in the Promotion Final 2-1 AET. During his stint at the Club, Ben’s time of the pitch was limited, largely due to the form of central defence pairing Callum Reynolds and Josh Hill, however he quickly become a firm favourite amongst the dressing room and with the fans.

Royston Town full back Daniel Braithwaite also enjoyed a period at Meadow Park, which too saw much success. ‘Brathers’ signed for the Wood at the start of the 2009/10 season and spent three seasons with the Club. Most notably helping us gain promotion to the National League South, winning the Ryman Premier League play offs with a 2-0 victory over Kingstonian at Meadow Park.

Lastly, Royston Town’s Assistant Manager Chris Watters also experienced a period as a player at Meadow Park. As a flying left winger, ‘Watters’ quickly became a fans favourite amongst the Wood faithful, and again had a successful time as a player with the Club. Most notably during the 2005/06 season, Watters was a part of the famous side who won the Southern League Division One East title, as well as most impressively reached the FA Trophy Semi-Final, as Wood still remain the lowest ranked team in history to progress to that stage of the competition before being defeated by Conference National side Woking over two legs.

IN FOCUS: SORBA THOMAS

This season has seen our PASE Academy graduate Sorba Thomas turn from a boy into a man. He has adapted to a new role within Luke Garrard’s side in recent weeks offering his services as left wing back and is our player in focus for Saturday’s match preview against Royston Town.

Thomas has excelled for the First Team this season and has arguably been one of our best and most consistent performers with a number of outstanding performances. At present he has 20 appearances to his name in the league, including 4 goals, as well as a number of assists.

Sorba has also shown his versatility, starting the season alongside Kabongo Tshimanga as part of our front two at Torquay United on the opening day of the season, before taking up the advanced midfield role, before in recent weeks featuring and shining as a left wing back. It has been an exciting evolution to witness for management staff and fans alike, as we have seen Sorba grow in confidence as a player over the last 18 months.

The 20-year-old made a total of 32 appearances last campaign, mainly featuring from the bench. However, he was rewarded with a new contract with the Wood in the Summer, committing his future for a further three years at the club, which has seemingly given him a new lease of life.

MATCH DAY INFORMATION

Admission Prices

Match ticket prices as listed on Royston Town FC’s website are as follows:
Adult – £10.00
Concessions – £6.00
Under 16 – £2.00

Please note, should Wood fans wish to purchase in advance, Royston Town offer tickets to be pre-purchased, click here to buy now.

Match Preview written By Joe Karadzas (Press Assistant)

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