Garside at the double puts Parkway in the hat

Parkway recorded their first win of the season under the lights at Bolitho with victory over Didcot Town in a replay of the 1st Round Qualifying phase.

Despite the victory, It wasn’t plane sailing writes Graham Lloyd…

3 - 2
Full Time
Graham Lloyd

Full Match Report

After Saturday’s 1-1 draw in the FA Cup 1st round qualifying tie, the teams met again at Bolitho Park for the replay. Parkway made 3 changes with Tyler Ashmead starting in place of Reece Shanley and the Saturday’s injured duo of Callum Rose and Dan Rooney being replaced by Callum Hall and Aaron Goulty. The visitors made 2 changes to their starting 11 from Saturday with Ben Putland and Jamar Smith replacing Harley Giles and Ollie Nadin respectively.

Parkway almost took the lead in the first minute with Leigh Bedwell gathering a through ball from Billy Palfrey just ahead of Ben Seymour. With the game settling into an even affair, Didcot responded with Smith cutting in from the left on 3 minutes and firing just over. Goulty and Seymour then linked well to set up Jack Crago whose shot was deflected behind for a corner. Play continued to switch from end to end and on 13 minutes a free kick from the left by the dangerous Connor Barrett was headed behind for the visitor’s first corner.

With the industrious Hall and Goulty beginning to influence the midfield areas by pressing hard and winning second balls, Parkway began to dominate the midfield exchanges. On 15 minutes a Palfrey free kick from 25 yards was pushed behind for a corner by Bedwell from which the recycled ball fell to Rio Garside whose low angled shot flew just wide. Crago then forced another corner with Palfrey’s shot being blocked and cleared. Didcot were being forced to play on the counter looking to play long diagonal balls to Smith and Barrett in the wide areas. On 21 minutes good play by the tricky Barrett released Josh Hedges who turned sharply just inside the 18 yard area and shot narrowly wide of the far post.


Parkway continued to move the ball well forcing the visitors to defend in numbers but were still unable to penetrate in the final third. As the pressure increased, on 23 minutes a strong run along the right by Ashmead showing good pace forced another corner which was cleared behind for a second corner. The visitors back line continued to be stretched and on 25 minutes a spectacular overhead kick from Austen Booth from another corner forced Bedwell into a flying, last ditch save at full stretch. Parkway continued to threaten however their final ball occasionally lacked quality and direction. On 27 minutes a Didcot break saw Smith and Hedges link well to release Barrett whose shot was blocked by some solid defending with the makeshift central defensive pair of Booth and Mikey Williams holding firm.

Parkway looking to build patiently from the back with Williams making some intelligent and penetrating forward runs, continued to probe an opening with Bedwell forced to make further important saves to keep his side in the game. Booth became the first player to be cautioned on 31 minutes as the visitors launched a counter attack with the free kick coming to nothing. The half continued with Parkway controlling the majority of possession and creating half chances with the visitors counter attacks being nullified by a well organised Parkway defence with Kyle Moore rarely being called into action.

An entertaining, highly competitive half with Parkway generally dominating possession and creating the better chances with the visitors dangerous on the break and Bedwell making some excellent saves to keep the score at 0-0.

Parkway were forced into a half time substitution with Shanley replacing Palfrey who had picked up an injury towards the end of the first half. Parkway started the second half playing with intensity and at a high tempo and took the lead on 48 minutes. A mazy run from deep by Williams released Crago along the left who did well to link with Seymour with the ball being played out to the unmarked Garside on the right who drilled a low shot across the keeper in at the far post from around 15 yards. Parkway continued to threaten, moving the ball swiftly through midfield with Hall prominent and arguably playing some of their best football of the season, constantly stretching the Didcot defence.

The early period of pressure paid off again as Parkway doubled their lead on 56 minutes. A long ball into the Didcot 18 yard area was misjudged by Bedwell under pressure from Crago who got beyond the keeper only to be dragged down as he pushed the ball narrowly wide. Bedwell saw yellow and after some delay, Seymour, who had missed a penalty earlier in the season, took responsibility and confidently converted the spot kick.

After the early period of Parkway pressure, the pattern of the game changed with Didcot beginning to force the pace as they searched for a way back into the game. On 61 minutes Parkway were given a warning as Hedges raced clear on to a long ball and fired narrowly wide from around 18 yards. Cameron McNeill was cautioned for a foul as the intensity increased with Didcot forcing Parkway on to the defensive and now looking the more threatening.

Didcot then made a series of substitutions with Andi Noka replacing the lively Smith on 63 minutes with Seth Humphries and Tyler Webb replacing Ben Putland and Jim Glover on 67 minutes. Webb was quickly into the action with his header going just wide on 70 minutes after a Didcot cross from the left. Parkway were coming under increasing pressure as Didcot upped their pace and Williams was booked for a challenge around the halfway line which prevented a Didcot breakaway.

With Parkway losing their grip on the game and losing their composure, they conceded possession in midfield allowing Didcot to break clear and they reduced the deficit from the penalty spot on 74 minutes. Moore was adjudged to have conceded a foul in the penalty area and was booked with set piece specialist Barrett hammering home the penalty. With Didcot continuing to press hard, Garside was cautioned for a foul on 79 minutes as the visitors remained in the ascendancy.

Parkway did however almost increase their lead further on 84 minutes. A powerful low drive from substitute Shanley from around 15 yards rebounded off the base of the post and fell to the predatory Seymour who reacted sharply with his close range follow up effort somehow being kept out at point bank range by Bedwell.

Parkway were then caught by a sucker punch as the visitors broke away almost immediately with a long ball along the right causing confusion in the Parkway defence allowing Taylor Bedwell to drill home an angled drive from inside the 18 yard area. With extra time now looming the game opened up with both sides going for a winner.

Parkway had a penalty shout waved away on 90 minutes after Crago tumbled over in the box and with 4 minutes stoppage time being signalled, Goulty’s shot from around 20 yards on 92 minutes was deflected behind for a corner.

The game came to a dramatic climax in the final minute of stoppage time. Seymour, whose movement, and pace had stretched the Didcot defenders all game, worked himself time and space on the right to deliver a searching cross to the far post to pick out the diminutive Garside who reacted well to head goalward from a narrow angle with the keeper attempting to claw the ball away from close to the line with the referee’s assistant indicating the ball had actually crossed the line. A pulsating end to a compelling game.

Two close games both with nervy endings with little between the two sides over the 180 minutes. Parkway will be delighted to get their first win of the season and in particular with a their depleted squad for the replay but will be concerned at letting a 2 goal lead slip after looking well in control.

Credit to Didcot who competed well and provided tough opposition but it is Parkway who progress to the next round where they will travel to fellow Southern Premier side North Leigh who beat AFC Stoneham 3-1 in their replay tonight. The tie will take place on Saturday 17 September.

Before that Parkway now have 2 games at Bolitho Park with Swindon Supermarine the visitors in the league on Saturday followed by the visit of Exeter City in the Devon St Lukes Bowl next Tuesday. It is hoped the Parkway injury situation will have improved by then and a fuller, fitter squad will be available for selection.

"Is this the turning point? I think the turning point will be when we get our full quota of players back in the building”
Lee Hobbs

Match Info

PLYMOUTH PARKWAY 3 (Garside 48, 90+4, Seymour pen 56)

DIDCOT TOWN 2 (Barrett pen 74, T Bedwell 85)



1 Moore, 2 Ashmead, 3 Lane ©, 4 Palfrey (Shanley 46), 5 Booth, 6 Williams, 7 Goulty, 8 Hall, 9 Seymour, 10 Garside, 11 Crago

Substitutes: 12 Shanley, 14 Bleasdale (unused), 15 L Rooney (unused), 16 Mead-Crebbin (gk)(unused)


1 L Bedwell, 2 Palmer, 3 McNeill, 4 T Bedwell, 5 Putland (Webb 67), 6 Learoyd ©, 7 Barder, 8 Glover (Humphries 67), 9 Hedges, 10 Smith (Noka 63), 11 Barrett.

Substitutes:12 Humphries, 14 Webb, 15 Noka, 16 Bones (unused)

Attendance:  301


Parkway 9
Didcot 2

Parkway 15
Didcot Town 9

Parkway 4
Didcot 4

Parkway 18
Didcot 5

Throw ins 
Parkway 30
Didcot 24

Goal Kicks
Parkway 8
Didcot 14

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