One win takes Cromer to Carrow Road

Cromer Town battled through to the semi-finals of the Norfolk Senior Cup on Saturday afternoon.They beat danger team Spixworth 3-1 after an all-Anglian Combination clash full of incident.

Cromer Town battled through to the semi-finals of the Norfolk Senior Cup on Saturday afternoon.

They beat danger team Spixworth 3-1 after an all-Anglian Combination clash full of incident.

They will now host Ridgeons Premier side Norwich United in the semi-finals on February 13, a win away from a Carrow Road showpiece final.

The other semi-final was already known and will feature near neighbours Dereham and Mattishall.

The Crabs were second in the Premier Division to Spixworth's lowly position of third from bottom.

But the north Norfolk side was aware before Saturday's quarter-final that league form counts for nothing in cup ties, especially as Spixworth had put out Ridgeons sides King's Lynn Reserves - the cup holders - and Thetford Town in previous rounds.

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Cromer manager Chris Wigger said: 'We knew there was a real good chance to progress - there was a lot at stake. We are really chuffed to be in the next round.'

He said Norwich United had put Cromer out of the Senior Cup twice in the past five years and would be a tough prospect in the next round.

'We know how difficult it is to play against Ridgeons League sides - you expect them to be organised and hard-working. We fully know it will be a real tough game.'

Cromer Reserves also booked their place in a cup semi-finals with a 4-1 home win against Foulsham Reserves in the C S Morley (Reserve KO) Cup.

A brace for Paul Spruce and one goal apiece for James Wright and James Marsh saw them secure a comfortable victory.

Spixworth United 1, Cromer Town 3

SIX weeks since their last game, Cromer made the trip to Spixworth in the last Norfolk Senior Cup quarter-finals tie.

Barnes (suspended), Gray (holiday) and Pipe (cup tied) were the absentees for Cromer, writes Richard Cox.

The Crabs made a very positive start, dominating possession from the outset and had their first chance when Tom Davies' low cross came out to David Harwood who fired narrowly wide with his low strike from 30 yards.

The visitors made their early dominance tell by taking the lead on 16 minutes.

Karl Horton cut inside from the left and then played a clever ball through to Darren Terrington whose first effort on goal was blocked. But the Cromer No 9 slotted the rebound in at the near post.

Spixworth failed to cause any problems and didn't look like getting an equaliser and it was Cromer who got the next goal to extend their lead on 33 minutes.

Some good persistence in the corner from Matthew Eves resulted in him making space for himself to cross low to the near post where Terrington flicked the ball on to Ryan Honeyman, who found the back of the net with the aid of a deflection.

Before the break the home side had a superb opportunity to pull a goal back when Mark Pitcher got on the end of the ball through the Cromer defence. He was through on goal but lost control of the ball and it ran out of play.

Shortly after, the Crabs came close to adding a third when Terrington's header rattled the bar after an Eves cross from the right.

At the start of the second half Cromer came close to adding to their advantage.

Tom Davies' corner went to Daniel Cullington at the back post whose header was cleared off the line.

Minutes later another Tom Davies delivery picked out brother Liam whose well-directed header seemed goalbound, only to be kept out by an excellent save from Ross Bilham.

It wasn't until the final 10 minutes that Spixworth looked like grabbing a goal. Josh Barzey broke the offside trap but was denied by a good Richard Kellett save.

In the 86th minute Cromer were reduced to 10 men when the linesman indicated to the referee that Tom Davies had deliberately handled the ball on the goal line, although the ball had apparently struck the upright. From the resulting penalty Damien Didwell beat Kellett from 12 yards.

It could have been a nervy final period but from a breakaway through Terrington, Cromer won a penalty after goalkeeper Bilham brought Terrington down. As a result Bilham received a straight red card and Harwood beat stand-in keeper Barzey to secure the Crabs' place in the semi-finals. After so long without a game it was a good performance and an excellent result.

On Saturday, Cromer entertain Dersingham in the league and on Wednesday night entertain Mattishall, in what could be a Carrow Road rehearsal.