Fisher 3-2 Oakwood
Saturday 27 August 2022
FA Vase First Qualifying Round
Scorers: Malaki Coker (3 mins), Isaac Thompson (32 mins), Jacob Katonia (58 mins)
Fisher’s busy August continued with a First Qualifying Round Isuzu FA Vase tie against step six Southern Combination side Oakwood and there will be no let-up in their crammed fixture programme as a 3-2 victory saw them advance to the next round.
With the number of games seeing several players out injured, Manager Ajay Ashanike brought in some reinforcements in the week with Isaac Thompson and Jacob Katonia returning to the club and a debut off the bench for Nader Zeddini.
Fisher got off to the perfect start when three minutes in Malaki Coker swept onto Darnelle Bailey-King’s whipped cross and whilst not making perfect contact it was enough to lop the ball over the Oakwood keeper and drop into the net. Fisher looked rampant in these early exchanges and with Bailey King and Coker both finding space on either wing a comfortable win looked on the cards. However, some careless playing out from the back saw Paul Johnson win the press and tee up a chance from twenty-five yards that he slammed home off the underside of the cross bar.
An open game continued at great pace and Thompson saw an effort clip the cross bar have wriggled past a couple of defenders on the edge of the box and Bailey King slammed an effort against the base of the post. Fisher received a further injury blow when Osemen Usifoh pulled up with a hamstrung injury and was replaced by Katonia. Fisher’s forward play was looking shar and they created several more good chances before a second error at the back gift Ashley Hollom a run on goal and he slipped the ball past Amedu to give the visitors the lead.
On thirty-eight minutes Fisher brought the tie level again after Coker’s twisting and turning on the right wing gave him space to send over low cross dummied by Shoderu which saw the ball run through for Thompson to move it into space and stab home.
A breathless paced first half still had more to come when Katonia’s bursting run in to the penalty saw him upended but Thompson’s effort from the resulting penalty was too close to the keeper who had dived the correct way and saved comfortably.
Fisher went straight not the attack in the second spell and Thompson and Bailey-King both saw Greaves save well low down from driven efforts. Greaves was now all that stood between Fisher and a goal glut as he tipped a curling Thompson effort over the bar, but from the resulting corner Coker’s header was turned home by Jacob Katonia at the far post. It was to be Coker’s last involvement as he limped off to be replaced by Tobi Irefin.
Fisher continued to press forward and Greaves denied Shoderu before quickly rising to somehow save rebound efforts from Bailey-King and Thompson with the help of a defender on the line. With the Vase rules meaning if level the game would go straight to penalties Oakwood were never out of it despite Fisher having a lot of the second half possession ad the bulk of the chances. Fisher could have wrapped the tie up when Katonia, looking very sharp on his return, drove forward and exchanged passes with Thompson, but when poised to shoot found Shoderu also trying to get onto the pass and the resulting chances was wasted.
Oakwood kept battling and showed great spirit, but could not mount sufficient pressure to cause any alarm for Fisher at the back and the final whistle saw Fisher through to meet neighbours Forest Hill Park next month in the second qualifying round.
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