Kirby heads Portchester into cup semis

Theo Lewis scored for the Hawks in the 38th minute at Wealdstone. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Good show on the road as Hawks impress to beat Wealdstone

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Nathan Kirby netted two headers to earn AFC Portchester a 2-1 win at Southern League AFC Totton and a place in the semi-finals of the Russell-Cotes Cup.

The win gave the Royals a cup double over their hosts, having previously knocked them out of the Hampshire Senior Cup.

Portchester will take on Skrill South Farnborough at Wicor Rec for a place in the final.

‘We are now in three semi-finals – the Hampshire Senior Cup, Portsmouth Senior Cup and this competition,’ said Royals director of football Mick Jenkins.

‘The players are getting themselves into a cup groove.

‘Since coming back from our weather-enforced break, we have started where we left off by winning three consecutive games.’

Kirby struck midway through the first half, scoring with a good downward diving header from a pin-point Tom Settle cross. In the second half the Royals found themselves under increasing pressure as Totton stepped up a gear.

When the home side levelled 10 minutes from time, extra-time looked on the cards.

Kirby had other ideas, however, and two minutes before the final whistle he headed in another precision Settle delivery.

Elsewhere, Nathan Paxton set Horndean on their way to a 2-0 Wessex League premier division win over Verwood Town at Five Heads Park.

His sixth-minute goal was added to by Dan Martin – after Paxton was felled in the box.

‘We weren’t at our best but, for once, we put our chances away,’ said boss Dave Carter.

‘Both teams tried to play football on a very sticky, bobbly surface.

‘We deserved the points, with our keeper Tom Boyle hardly having a save to make.

‘The back four of Alex Shephard, Tom Chapman, Kev Chatfield and Dan Ayres were magnificent.’

Fareham Town travel to face Christchurch at Hurn Bridge tonight (7.45pm).