Gallery: Battling nine-man Potters Bar beat Heybridge Swifts in FA Trophy

PUBLISHED: 10:14 12 October 2011 | UPDATED: 10:25 12 October 2011

Potters Bar's Matt Clifford is closely marked

Potters Bar's Matt Clifford is closely marked


POTTERS Bar Town will face AFC Hayes in the first round qualifying of the FA Trophy after the nine-man Scholars knocked Heybridge Swifts out of the competition on Saturday.

Bar had two men sent-off before half-time in the preliminary round clash against Swifts, but battled through to the next stage courtesy of a penalty from leading scorer Tom Pett.

James Gershfield and Josh Urquhart saw red before the half-time whistle in a match that also saw Swifts skipper Danny Barber dismissed for two yellow cards in the second half.

Potters Bar started well, against the side they had beaten 2-1 in the Ryman League less than two weeks previously, with Matt Clifford and Pett combining to set up Gershfield right from the off.

But the Swifts defence managed to clear.

Gershfield again provided the threat in the ninth minute from a corner, his header flying wide.

A series of five corners in quick succession highlighted the Scholars’ dominance, but none were converted as the pressure on the Swifts defence mounted.

Bar pressure continued with further efforts from Pett and a Clifford long-range effort which dipped just inches over the crossbar on the half hour.

Then in the five minutes before half-time it looked all over for the Scholars as first Gershfield and then Urquhart were sent to the dressing room for challenges which on another day might only have produced a yellow card.

The second half opened as expected with pressure from Swifts as they looked to take advantage of the numerical superiority.

But it was Potters Bar who took the lead on 55 minutes.

First Dan Odamo and then Pett were impeded in the box and the referee pointed to the spot.

The in-form Pett stepped up to convert the penalty.

Swifts’ frustration was added to just moments later as two offences within two minutes saw skipper Barber become the third player of the afternoon to be red carded.

That effectively ended Swifts’ hopes as despite still having a numerical advantage they rarely troubled the Bar defence and on the odd occasion it was breached found keeper Matt Bennett in excellent form.

The win sets up a tie with Evo-Stik League Southern - Division One Central outfit AFC Hayes on Saturday, October 22 at the South Mimms Travel Stadium.

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