By Nick Wilson.
Basingstoke cruised through to the third round of the Hampshire Senior Cup, despite an early scare at home to Southern League Division 1 Central leaders Farnborough.
Farnborough took an early lead when striker Sam Shaban squared the ball and Charlie Kennedy was unfortunate to divert the ball into his own goal inside three minutes. Basingstoke came back with a swift reply though as less than sixty seconds later a run from Robert Atkinson was brought to an end as he was felled inside the Farnborough box giving Richie Whittingham the chance to bring Basingstoke immediately level.
Whittingham, made captain for the night with David Ray and Matt Partridge out, converted the penalty, opening his account for the club and levelling the match. Basingstoke looked to impose themselves on the game and ten minutes later took the lead. Aaron Jarvis latched on to a ball in behind from Sam Deadfield and slid the ball under Joel Driscoll to make it 2-1. The game ebbed and flowed for the rest of the half, Farnborough were unfortunate to hit a post and Basingstoke almost extended the lead but Whittingham’s goalbound shot was blocked on the line.
Half Time: 2-1
Basingstoke started the second half on top and took just under ten minutes to find the third goal. It came from the head of Charlie Kennedy who found the net for a second time, making up for his early own goal by glancing home a corner at the near post. Basingstoke looked comfortable but almost let Farnborough back into the game as the visitors won a penalty of their own. Nic Cardini stepped up but Alex Tokarczyk got down to his left to push the spot kick wide for a corner and preserve the two goal cushion.
From then on Farnborough struggled as fatigue set in and Basingstoke took advantage. Romone Rose entered the fray and within five minutes had become the third Basingstoke player to score his first for the club. Picking the ball up some distance from goal, the striker hit a shot that evaded Driscoll’s hand and nestled in the bottom left hand corner. Basingstoke rounded off the night as Rose grabbed his second in stoppage time. A long passing move culminated in another long range effort that flew in via the post to put the icing on the cake for Basingstoke.
Full Time: 5-1