JAKE Hyde ensured that Swindon will never forget the striker they discarded almost a decade ago.

Hyde was with The Robins on professional terms as a teenager but was released in 2009 without playing for their first team.

However, he came back to haunt his old club with the goal that sent Woking into The Emirates FA Cup Third Round Proper.

Jake Hyde wheels away in celebration after scoring. Picture by David Holmes

In the 54th minute of last Sunday’s Second Round tie at The Energy Check County Ground, Hyde headed in a cross from the left by Josh Casey to put The Cards into the Third Round for the first time since the 1996-97 season, when they lost in a replay to Coventry City.

Hyde’s goal was the icing on the cake for Woking, who made a gritty display against Sky Bet League Two opponents, soaked up pressure and capitalised on Town’s frustration.

There was plenty of action in the first-half, mostly in favour of the dominant home team. Yet somehow the sides changed ends with the scoresheet blank.

Then Woking rocked Swindon and their supporters when Hyde – who played League football for Barnet, York City and Stevenage and appeared in Scotland’s second tier – got on the end of Casey’s cross.

Jake Hyde heads Woking into the Third Round Proper of the FA Cup. Picture by David Holmes

Back came The Robins, and in the 67th minute they went agonisingly close to equalising. Tricky substitute Elijah Adebayo centred and Scott Twine’s shot was denied by Woking keeper Ross’ legs.

With time running out, Woking sensed victory and played down the clock sensibly, keeping the ball on the left wing deep in Swindon territory.

And then it was all over. The Cards had defied the odds to add another glorious chapter to their history of FA Cup giant-killings.

For full match report, pictures and opinion, get the 6 December edition of the News & Mail

TOBY Edser celebrated his loan spell extension with a goal as Woking booked their place in the First Round of the FA Trophy with a 2-0 victory at home to Folkestone Invicta last Saturday.

The Nottingham Forest under-23s midfielder Edser put Alan Dowson’s side ahead after 21 minutes, before Paul Hodges doubled The Cards’ lead in the 35th minute, as Woking made light work of their Bostik League Premier Division opponents.

Paul Hodges slides the ball home for Woking. Picture by David Holmes

Folkestone had their best chance to score in the closing stages, when substitute Ian Draycott spurned a great opportunity from inside the six-yard box, as Woking held out to book their place in the First Round Proper of the FA Trophy.

Reflecting on his side’s performance 24 hours after the match, Cards’ boss Alan Dowson said: “There was the potential for Folkestone to be a banana skin fixture, so I was pleased that we managed to get on top early.

“They’re a side that score a lot of goals, but equally one that concedes a lot of goals too. At times, it seemed like they had six players up front, so it was important to be mindful of how they set up and to exploit their defensive weaknesses, which I felt we did ok.”

For the full match report and pictures, see the 29 November edition of the News & Mail

CHOBHAM’s season went from bad to worse last Saturday after they were thrashed 77-7 away to Thurrock.

It was the Surrey Heath side’s heaviest defeat in recent memory as they slipped into the bottom two of the London One South, prompting the need for potential widescale changes.

Tommy Reed tries to find a way forward for Chobham. Picture by John O’Brien

Despite making the long journey to Essex, Chobham were in good spirits and things looked up when they opened the scoring within a few minutes as Ben Whale crossed over the line for the first five-pointer, with fly half James Dunne adding the extras.

It wasn’t long, though, before Thurrock levelled the scores with a converted try of their own, followed by two more converted tries before the break to take a 21-7 lead.

Already plagued by injury this season, it didn’t get easier for Chobham as players pulled up injured. Thurrock, who recently added former Saracens, Ealing and England Sevens international Sam Stanley to their ranks, started to pull the strings, create gaps all over the park and run their opponents ragged, running in eight more tries.

Chob will be hoping for a much-improved showing this Saturday when entertain London Cornish at Fowlers Wells in a game they can ill-afford to lose.

For full match report and pictures, see the 29 November edition of the News & Mail

BEN Gerring made amends for his own goal against Gloucester City to score the winner against Slough Town and send Woking back to the top of the National League South table on Saturday.

The defender’s 30th minute strike was enough to give The Cards their third away win in eight days; albeit they were made to work hard for the three points against a tenacious Rebels side.

Armani Little battles hard for Woking. Picture by David Holmes

Josh Jackman reflected the nature of the first half proceedings when he managed to outwit three Woking players before firing over the crossbar, which typified The Rebels lack of composure in front of goal.

The miss proved costly for the east Berkshire side when Max Kretzschmar’s corner kick was stabbed home by Gerring to give The Cards the lead on the half-hour mark.

The Rebels continued to put the visitors under pressure in the second half, but The Cards’ defence remained resolute as Woking moved back to the top of the National League South table.

Full match report and pictures in the 22 November edition of the News & Mail

THERE was lots of glitz and glamour on show at Woking Athletic Club’s Annual Awards Evening at the HG Wells Conference Centre.

With plenty of silverware at stake, the club celebrated its most successful track and field season ever in the esteemed company of the Mayor and Mayoress of Woking, Cllr Will Forster and Hannah Thompson, along with other dignitaries.

Woking Athletics Club award winners. Picture by David Holmes

Among those recognised for their achievements were Izzy Leikis, who scooped the Under-17 Best Field Performance for the high jump.

Leikis is currently ranked 13th best in Great Britian for her age group, moving up an impressive 17 places from her 2017 ranking.

Dominic Ariyo Francis receives the award for Under 17 Boys’ Best Track Performance from News & Mail sports editor Andy Fitzsimons

Another winner on the night was Matthew Smith, who picked up the Kim Henderson Memorial Trophy for the best performance at the Young Athletes Championships.

He also scooped the Best Field Performance for an under-13 boy, which sees him rank seventh in the UK for the discus event.

With 38 track and field club records broken, along with six athletes who reached the English Schools Championships, it’s been a truly momentous year for the south Woking-based club.

For a full list of winners, plus picture spread, see the 22 November edition of the News & Mail

SHEERWATER got back to winning ways in the league after coming out on top in a six-goal thriller against Fleet Spurs on Saturday.

The Sheers returned from two consecutive defeats to net four times for the first time since September, as they edged out Spurs 4-2 at The Laithwaite Community Stadium.

Hat-trick hero: Shane Rideout was on target for The Sheers once again

After dropping points away to Sandhurst Town the previous week, Sheers’ boss Pete Ruggles made two changes to the starting XI, with new signing Danny Taylor – the third of the Taylor brothers – the most notable addition to the side after defecting from Abbey Rangers.

The visitors took the lead against the run of play after 24 minutes. However, Shane Rideout hit two goals with Danny Taylor adding a third before half-time to ensure the hosts were in control.

Rideout completed his hat-trick early in the second half, with Spurs only able to grab a consolation goal.

Speaking to the News & Mail after the match, Ruggles said: “It’s a pleasing win; yes, we could’ve done better and pushed on, but we got the three points.

“It’s great to see more options coming back, hopefully it’s the start of a good run,” he added.

For a full match report, see the 22 November edition of the News & Mail

INTERIM Knaphill manager Richard Keown made it three wins from three after a narrow win against CB Hounslow United at Redding Way on Saturday.

The win moves The Knappers up to 12th in the Premier Division table, the 1-0 victory keeping Keown’s fantastic start to frontline football management on track.

Richard Keown has led The Knappers to three wins from three

Despite taking all three points away at Camberley Town the previous week, Keown rung the changes ahead of the visit of Hounslow, with Yosof Aloui, Sheridan Campbell and Carl Bower all making their Knappers’ debuts.

The home side’s early pressure paid dividends when Jack Collins capitalised on a poor clearance and crossed the ball for Matt Kellet-Smith, who smashed his header home at the back post after 18 minutes.

Jack Collins helped make the goal for Knaphill. Picture by Andy Fitzsimons

The Knappers were saved by the post after Hounslow were awarded a spot-kick in the second half, and deservedly held on to their 1-0 lead to claim all three points and push their way back up to a more respectable mid-table standing.

Speaking to the News & Mail after the match, Keown said: “The players are buzzing and, with new additions, we’re making it harder for other teams to beat us.”

For the full match report, pick up the 22 November edition of the News & Mail

CHOBHAM slipped to their seventh defeat in 10 matches after they lost 19-16 at home against fellow strugglers Chichester.

After controlling large parts of the match, Chob were made to rue a mixture of mistakes and indiscipline, which saw their Sussex visitors leap-frog them in the London One South table.

Chris Kent in action for Chobham. Picture by John O’Brien

Speaking after the match, Chobham player coach Ryan Gregory said: “We were the creators of own downfall. It’s very frustrating and something we need to rectify as soon as possible to climb back up the table.”

Chobham travel to Thurrock this Saturday, who will present more stern opposition. However, Gregory knows his side has the ability to get the result in Essex to kick-start their season.

For the full match report and more pictures, see the 22 November edition of the News & Mail

WOKING manager Alan Dowson has no qualms about drawing Swindon Town away in the Second Round Proper of this year’s Emirates FA Cup.

Max Kretzschmar blasts the vital penalty against Torquay. Picture by David Holmes

A hard-earned 1-0 win against league rivals Torquay United on Saturday booked Dowson’s side in the next round, winger Max Kretzschmar smashing home his sixth penalty of the season three minutes into the second half to the delight of the 323 travelling supporters.

Speaking live on BBC2 from the Hampton & Richmond Borough’s Jezzards Beveree Stadium on Monday night, Dowson was notably pleased with the draw, citing it off camera as a “winnable tie” following the sacking of The Robins’ manager Phil Brown at the weekend.

Max Kretzschmar celebrates firing Woking into the Second Round of the FA Cup. Picture by David Holmes

Swindon reached the second round following their 2-1 win at home to National League North side York City, but Dowson senses an opportunity for the Cards.

“You always want to try and get a home draw, but if you happen to be drawn away from home, you want a league club, and we have.

“Swindon are in a bit of disarray at the moment; they’re struggling at the wrong end of League 2 and they’ve just sacked their manager, so we’ve got the best chance we’ll have of going there and potentially causing an upset,” he added.

For full match report and pictures, see the 15 November edition of the News & Mail

WOKING boss Alan Dowson praised his side’s character from coming back to draw 2-2 with Chippenham Town last Saturday.

A late stoppage time goal from Jamaica international footballer Jamar Loza was enough to give the cards a share of the points at Hardenhuish Park and maintain the charge on Billericay Town at the top of the National League South table.


Jamar Loza (left) celebrates with Max Kretzschmar. Picture by David Holmes

After a relatively uneventful first half, it was the hosts who got their noses in front just eight minutes before the break. And one goal soon became two nine minutes after the interval, when indecision at the heart of the Woking defence from a long throw enabled Karnell Chambers to capitalise again to double the hosts’ tally.

Woking were thrown a lifeline when Nuno Felix fouled Toby Edser in the box. It paved the way for Loza to pull a goal back for the visitors from the penalty spot with 20 minutes remaining.

With The Cards increasingly on top, an equaliser looked inevitable; so when Loza’s cross was deflected into the net to make it 2-2 two minutes into stoppage time, The Bluebirds were in meltdown.

Loza hits the ball across that leads to Woking’s equaliser. Picture by David Holmes

“I was disappointed with the two soft goals we conceded; however, I thought we played well and probably could have won the game had we taken a couple of other chances,” Dowson told the News & Mail.

“All in all, I was pleased with the players’ attitude and the character they showed to come back to draw 2-2,” added Dowson.

For the full report and pictures, get the 8 November edition of the News & Mail