NFA Sunday Vase Round 2.
Sunday 9th November '03
Kings Heath United

Jimmy Leah (2)
Chris Davies
Julian Anger
    Ryan Kember

"With the levels of alcohol:blood ratio's in the squad hitting the roof, boss Ivey must have feared the worst going into this potential banana-skin cup tie. Royals, from the Alliance Division 2 were an un-known quantity to the Heath, so anything could happen. A comforting tea and buscuit, kindly supplied by Ivey senior, soothed any pre-match feelings of dizzyness, headaches, stomach problems and general drunkeness. All exept for Rob Page, who appeared to be giggling and air-kicking through-out most of the game. His coffee clearly wasn't strong enough."

The match kicked-off and Heath were in control from the first kick. Billingham and Hamill controlling most of the attacking play from their full-back positions. The 2 players, Heath's new answer to Cafu and Carlos, combined for the opening goal. A 60-yard spray from Billingham was taken with precision by Hamill, a neat touch inside found the feet of Martin Allen, Allen's shot came back off the keeper and debutant Jimmy Leah tucked away the rebound. 1-0, simplicity and conviction personified.
Royals then rocked Heath with an equaliser, heavily against the run of play. A defensive mix-up let in the pacey Ryan Kember to squeeze his effort just past Urquhart. Kings Heath then spent the remainder of the half going through the motions. Nothing going drastically wrong, but the end product was lacking. Heath were using the width very well, but some resolute defending from Royals kept the scores level going into the break.
The half-time rest period brought tea, a smile and good hospitality from Ivey Snr, and a forceful talk from Ivey Jnr. The combination seemed to do the trick as the second-half turned out to be a one-sided affair. Urquhart nothing more than a spectator and part-time sweeper. Billingham and Hamill continued to push forward. Davies and Sampson were forever causing problems, Leah and Allen grafted hard up-front, yet the ball would not go in the net. The Royals keeper was keeping everything out, with more thanks to luck than judgement. As the half went on, it was becoming more apparent that it was just one of those days. It was conceeded as inevertable that the full-time whistle blew and extra-time loomed.
A quick turn-around and extra-time commenced. The first 15 minutes followed the same pattern, Heath were swarming all around the Royals penalty area. Davies came closest with a drilled right foot effort, which whistled past the post.
The last 7 minutes of extra-time finally saw the break-through. Davies was clear after some great work from Andy Blenco im the midfield, he kept his cool and lobbed the on-coming Royals keeper. Relief!
This sparked celebrations reminiscent of David Pleat at Wembley, only without the embarrassing suit. Just moments later Jimmy Leah doubled his tally with a powerful half-volley strike, and moments after that, Anger placed a side-footed shot into the bottom corner for 4-1.
It was a long-time in coming, but the convincing display had finally occured to take Heath into the next round.

Kings Heath United (4-4-2):
G.Billingham, N.Blenco, R.Page, W.Hamill
C.Davies, J.Anger, A.Blenco, C.Sampson
J.Leah, M.Allen
Venue: North Oval Ground, Kings Heath
K.O.: 10:30am
Report By Glenn Billingham
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