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Denton and Shafi strike to seal FA Vase victory for Windsor over Erith Town

Erith Town 1, Windsor 2

Windsor registered their ninth consecutive win in all competitions to beat Erith Town and reach the third round proper of the FA Vase on Sunday.

The second round tie brought together two of non-league’s most in-form sides but it was Windsor who booked their passage into the next round of the competition.

Jack Denton fired in Windsor’s crucial second, smashing the ball into the net after collecting the ball from Barry Hayles’ chest down in the 70th minute. It led Windsor to their ninth straight win and their second best run of form under manager Mick Woodham.

There were chances at both ends of the field in a goalless first half. Nadir Shafi came the closest to an opener when he forced Erith keeper Adam Molloy into a save with his legs.

Windsor stopper Hugo Sobte also had to be alert to get a strong hand to Steadman Callender’s volley and push it behind for a corner.

Six minutes after the break the deadlock was broken when Hayles, a former Premier League player, saw his shot deflected into the path of Shafi and the Cox Green Academy product reacted quickest to nip in front of Molloy and chest the ball into the net.

The Southern Counties East League Premier Division side weren’t behind for long, however, and four minutes later Windsor paid the price for their failure to track full-back Dan Palfrey who headed home from six yards.

Before kick-off Woodham had said his team would go into the tie without fear, and throwing caution to the wind, they restored their lead in the 70th minute. Player coach Ashley Smith crossed for Hayles who teed up Denton for a fine right-footed finish into the bottom corner. Windsor used their experience to see out the remainder of the tie, which included five minutes of stoppage time. They can now look forward to the third round of the Vase which is due to be played on Saturday, December 3.

Windsor return to league action when Abingdon United visit Stag Meadow on Tuesday, November 21  (7.45pm).

Windsor: Sobte, Sutherland, Smith, Brooks-Smith, Ingram, Cannon, Gould, Coyne, Shafi, Hayles, Denton. Subs: Pearce, Bowles, Roth, Smyth, Poole. 

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