Alex Pike is eyeing an emotional Wembley return.
And the Gosport Borough boss has called on the FA Trophy gods to deliver his Skrill South side the easiest route to the home of football – the Hawks.
Borough are in the hat for tomorrow’s semi-final draw for the first time in their history after Sammy Igoe and Tim Sills secured a shock 2-1 win at Skrill North leaders North Ferriby United on Saturday.
But for the Privett Park manager, it’s not the first time he has masterminded a memorable underdogs’ march to the arch.
In 1992, rookie Pike became the youngest manager to lift the FA Vase – aged just 31 – when he led Wessex League outsiders Wimborne Town to success over defending champions Guiseley.
Now 52, he is relishing the chance to return to the scene of his greatest triumph with his hometown club.
He said: ‘For me, I’m fortunate to have actually won a two-legged semi-final and gone to Wembley.
‘I lived in Wimborne and took Wimborne there.
‘But Gosport is my home town.
‘I was born and bred in Gosport and I’d love nothing more than to take my hometown club to Wembley.’
Borough are the only side outside of the Skrill Premier to have definitely reached the last four.
Skrill South counterparts the Hawks’ welcome Aldershot Town to Westleigh Park tomorrow night after their clash was postponed on Saturday.
The winner of that rescheduled tie will face either Gosport, Grimsby Town or Cambridge United.
And Borough’s boss jokingly stoked the fires ahead of a potential derby match-up.
Pike added: ‘I would like the weakest team left in the competition – Havant!’
– JEFF MARSHMAN