Thatcham Town are through to the first qualifying round of the FA Cup after a 2-0 win away to Alresford Town on Saturday.
Goals from Shane Cooper-Clark and Joe Blount helped Thatcham navigate their way through the preliminary round, after losing at this stage of the competition last year.
The Kingfishers will face Hamworthy United away in the next round on September 2 after winning their fifth straight match this season, and picking up their fifth clean sheet.
It didn’t take long for Thatcham to get on the scoresheet, with Cooper-Clark grabbing the first goal after 13 minutes.
Harrison Bayley had played a long ball forward, which Cooper-Clark brought under control and fired past Alresford keeper Daniel Kempson from 12 yards.
Thatcham should have scored again seven minutes later, with captain Tom Melledew’s free kick being headed just wide by Harry Grant.
Alresford had a couple of chances on the half-hour mark, the first of which saw Tom Sands stick his shot wide when he just had Thatcham stopper Chris Rackley to beat.
And when Mark James was penalised for handball outside of the box, Rackley was forced to make a diving save as Sands’ free kick was fired past the wall.
Going into half-time Thatcham retained their one-goal advantage, although early in the second half both sides had golden opportunities to score.
Cooper-Clark narrowly missed from Curtis Angell’s cross, shortly before Geoff Dunn fired across goal on 52 minutes for Alresford but to no avail.
Thatcham boss Danny Robinson elected to bring on Josh Helmore in place of Cooper-Clark, following his impressive performance in the Kingfishers’ 3-0 win against Woodley the previous Tuesday.
And it proved to be an inspired choice as in the 78th minute, Helmore found himself some space on the left and sent in a perfect cross into the box, finding the head of Blount who scored his first goal for the club.
Blount nearly got a second soon after when a shot went wide while through on goal, but it didn’t matter and Thatcham made their way into the next round of the FA Cup.
It’s back to Hellenic Premier League action for Thatcham this Saturday as they travel to Royal Wootton Bassett, where they will hope to keep their unbeaten run going.
The Kingfishers then have another away game at Wantage Town next Monday.