Both Soham and Maldon came into the game on the back of good FA Cup victories against Essex Senior League sides and the prospect of facing each other in the first qualifying round in two weeks. The Greens made one change from the side that defeated Burnham Ramblers with Ryan Auger returning in place of the injured Neil Andrews
The opening periods of the game were fairly even although chances at either end were limited as Das headed straight at Bircham, Wareham placed a shot across goal and narrowly wide of the far post, whilst at the other end Cotton fired just over with a rising shot from the edge of the area. However two goals in as many minutes just before the half hour mark gave Maldon the advantage. The first came in the 27th minute when Robinson received Glowacki’s ball down the right wing, taking it into the area and laying it off to Dave Wareham to place home. The hosts then doubled their lead in the 29th minute when Michael Das, although looking in an offside position, ran onto Golby’s long ball from his own half, to slot past Bircham. Soham were given a way back into the game three minutes later when Glowacki was adjudged to have handled Paxman’s ball into the area with Dan Cotton
sending Wright the wrong way from the spot. Both sides had opportunities to further the score before the break but Robinson looped over from an acute angle, Glowacki placed across goal and wide before the two keepers made fine saves to keep out Auger's volley from 25 yards and Das' header.
Soham began the second half by replacing Ryan Auger with Scott Davis
and thought they had another strong call for a penalty moments after the restart when it appeared that Tonner had stopped Mason’s cross with his hand, but this time the officials allowed play to continue. Tonner and Paxman both came close before the hosts started to get on top just after the hour with Harradine clearing Das’ strike off his line and Golby heading narrowly wide from the resultant corner, before the hosts then had a penalty appeal of their own for handball turned down. The Greens’ best chance of the second period fell to Davis midway through the half, but the substitute headed Harradine’s freekick wide of the far post. Maldon continued pressing forward as Bircham tipped Durrant’s in-swinging freekick over his bar, before the fullback delivered another dangerous ball across the face of goal with both Das and Robinson somehow failing to connect. The hosts made sure of the three points by scoring twice more in the final ten minutes. Their third came with nine minutes remaining after Bromwich clipped Jamie Robinson inside the area, with the striker getting up to convert from the spot before two of the Maldon substitutes combined in the final minute to score the fourth with Joe Gardiner converting with a free header from Best’s left sided cross.
Soham Town Rangers
D. Bircham, R. Paterson, B. Harradine, M. Bromwich, J. Motley (M. Robinson 68), M. Simpson, J. Paxman, S. Carter. R. Mason, D. Cotton (J. Sessions 78), R. Auger (S. Davis 46)
: J. Asensi, J. McCabe
Maldon & Tiptree
J. Wright, J. Glowacki, V. Durrant, O. Berquez, G. Golby, M. Tonner, B. Bradbury (D. Hopkins 84), L. Dark (J. Gardner 88), M. Das, J. Robinson, D. Wareham (A. Best 82)
: J. May
: (2-1) 4-1
: D. Cotton (32 Pen)
: D. Wareham (27), M. Das (29), J. Robinson (82 Pen), J. Gardner (89)
: J. Packman (Foul 59)
: J. Glowacki (Dissent 31), D. Wareham (Foul 65)