Cray Wanderers 1-3 Sutton Common Rovers
Cray Wanderers 1-3 Sutton Common Rovers

Cray Wanderers bowed out of the FA Cup at the first time of asking in disappointing style as they were well beaten by an impressive Sutton Common Rovers side from a division below.

Missing a number of players due to injury, Cray started the game with debutants Nicky Bailey and Archie Burnett in midfield and a strike partnership of manager Danny Kedwell and Fjord Rogers up top.

The Wands started on the front foot with Bromley loanee Burnett having a shot saved by Michael Eacott in the SCR goal and Anthony Cook crossing for Rogers whose header was also well saved.

It was Rovers though who broke the deadlock on their first real attack when Danny Fernandez burst into the box and the ball was only half cleared to Brendan Murphy-McVey who drove the ball into the corner of the net from just outside the box to make it 0-1.

Murphy-McVey then crossed for Fernandez who had a header saved by Jack Turner as they looked to extend their lead, with Cray struggling to get back into the game.

SCR looked to play into Fernandez and who played the No9 role perfectly bringing in his team mates from there and it wasn’t until the half hour that The Wands got back into the game. 

Burnett saw his shot saved by the feet of Eacott, Kedwell then had two goal bound efforts blocked by the Rovers defence and Cook saw his hooked effort from a corner cleared off the line, with Freddie Cray blasting the rebound just wide.

Joe Taylor and Burnett both hit shots just off target for The Wands, before Sutton Common Rovers extended their lead with another break up field on 44 minutes. Malachi Robinson driving into the box before cutting the ball back from the bye line to Fernandez who was in acres of space to slot the ball home from ten yards out.

Cray were handed a late life line at the end of the half though when Rogers was tripped by Niran Butler in the box and referee Oliver Norris-Sanders pointed to the spot. Cook sent Eacott the wrong way with his penalty to make it 1-2 at the break and set the match up nicely for the second half.

Cray started the second half well with Kedwell having a header saved, but with The Wands pressing, SCR always posed a threat on the break, Robinson curling an effort from range just round the post on one such move.

The play became more and more broken up with the Rovers physio called upon several times throughout the half, but when the ball was in play, Cook was denied by Eacott after good work from Abdul Saccoh down the left.

With the home side pressing again they were caught on the break once more on 67 minutes when Adam Allen picked up the ball from a poor pass and broke clear of the Cray defence and to coolly place the ball past Turner into the far corner of the net to make it 1-3 and effectively kill the cup tie off.

Cray still kept going though, with Cook going close with a free kick and Kedwell seeing a dangerous cross headed on to the roof of the net by Rovers defender Aaron Bogle.

The final fifteen minutes of the game saw the ball go from end to end with chances for both sides, Tyrell Butler fired wide for Rovers and had another shot saved, while Kedwell had a free kick saved at the other end and Andy Dury fired wide from outside the area.

In the end Cray didn’t have the final touch in front of goal to get back in to the game and Sutton Common Rovers defended their lead comfortably to ensure a well earned place in the FA Cup second qualifying round for the Surrey side.

Goals: CWFC – Cook 45 pen. SCRFC – Murphy-McVey 11, Fernandez 44mins, Allen 67mins.
Referee: Mr Oliver Morris-Sanders.

Cray – Turner, Brand, Beckwith, Cray, Taylor (Saccoh44), Cook, Bailey, Burnett (Nuur 67)Rogers ( Drury 60), Kedwell. Subs Not Used: Coombes, Lewis, Onobagbe. 

SCR – Eacott, Dacres-Smith, Tanton, Allen, Bogle, N Butler, Bates, Henry (Healy 70), Murphy-McVey (Lyle 80), Fernandez (T Butler 60), Robinson. Subs Not Used: Tutt, Hattabi, Brown, James. 

Att: 187