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Hammers boss Browne thinks FA Cup giant-killing could be a big ask
BOSS Simon Browne is adamant Hamworthy United’s chances of springing a surprise in the FA Cup are remote and admits: “If I were a betting man, my money would be on Wimborne.”
Browne’s Hammers lock horns with the Magpies in an all-Dorset preliminary round tie at Cuthbury tomorrow with a lucrative purse of £1,925 at stake for the victors (3pm).
United, currently third in Wessex Premier, set up a first FA Cup meeting with their Southern League neighbours by seeing off Melksham, after a replay.
Wimborne, meanwhile, have a dismal recent record in the competition having been eliminated by lower league opposition twice in the past three seasons.
The Magpies, who met Aldershot in the first round in 1982, were beaten on home soil by Western Premier Sherborne in 2010 and Wessex Premier Fareham last season.
Browne, who helped Salisbury take Nottingham Forest to a second round replay in 2006, told the Daily Echo: “I have looked at the Wimborne squad and, compared with the start of last season, it has improved no end.
“They beat us 5-0 in pre-season and, although you could say you shouldn’t read too much into friendlies, I read a fair bit into that one. We had a pretty strong side out and Wimborne played two different teams and turned us over without too much difficulty.
“I don’t want to sound too defeatist but Wimborne are a good side, they are in the league above and should win the tie.
“Don’t get me wrong, we will do our best but, if I had money to place on the outcome, I would put it on Wimborne. I am not a betting man though!”
Magpies boss Steve Cuss has done his homework on Hammers having watched their FA Cup replay win over Melksham and Wednesday’s 2-1 defeat of Bournemouth Poppies.
He told the Daily Echo: “They have got some good players and it is going to be a tough game for us. We have to accept we are favourites to win the tie. We are at home and in a league above so we have to take that responsibility.”
The winners of the Cuthbury clash could set up another Dorset derby with Poppies in the first qualifying round next month.
Ken Vaughan’s men, marooned at the foot of Wessex Premier and without a point to their name from their opening six games, saw off Highworth in the extra preliminary round a fortnight ago.
Victory earned them a date with Western Premier Hallen at Victoria Park tomorrow (3pm) with the winners booking a home clash against either Wimborne or Hamworthy on September 14.
Magpies: (from) Harvell, Arnold, Whitley, Costello, Brian, Blake, Griffin, Hubbard, Stokoe, Gamble, Webb, Kemble, Davidson, Maybury, Roast, Ackerman.
Hammers: (from) Knights, Penny, Holland, Tayler, Biles, Sturgess, Lanahan, Stacey, Allen, Chudy, Claremont, Horlock, Pekun, Beckles, Bassariki, Head, Shovelton, Lockyer.
Poppies: (from) Lillington, Ayrton, Jackson, Corby, Bartlett, Burgis, Crow, Masson, Burt, Lammali, Phillips, Batchelor, Turner, Cooper, Pearce, Vaughan.
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