Semi-final spot clinched for Ampthill Town after nine-goal thriller against plucky Bradwell St Peters

Ampthill Town clinched a Gladwish SML Challenge Trophy semi-final place for the first time on Tuesday with a 6-3 win over brave Division Two side New Bradwell St Peters, writes Eric Turner.
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The Amps had beaten Premier sides Stansted and Aylesbury Vale Dynamos to get to the last eight but they finally overcame their lower grade visitors in a thrilling last eight tie who came back from 3-1 down before Town got over the line.

Ampthill got off to a great start when they took a 12th minute lead when Draycott's run saw Sam Holmes and Kadeem Gutzmore combine and the opening was created for Sonny Newbury-Barr to rifle home.

Bradwell hit the bar from a free kick before the visitors levelled on 35 minutes when Jesse Horn turned in the box and cracked home the equaliser.

Ampthill book a semi-final spot.Ampthill book a semi-final spot.
Ampthill book a semi-final spot.

But just before the break Town pressed in numbers and Kadeem Gutzmore put Town ahead again and he made it 3-1 just 10 minutes into the second half after finishing good work by Holmes.

Yet in a crazy five minute spell Bradwell pulled themselves back in the game when Al Gaspar and then Luke Burrows sent superb long range shots past Ross Tompkins.

But Town had their own answer when Phil Draycott hammered home a 20 yard drive to restore The Amps' lead within five minutes of Bradwell's equaliser.

Sam Holmes then got in on the act when he increased Town's lead after good work by Shea Greene and Gutzmore and it was the same duo again who supplied the opening for Holmes' second goal to make it 6-3.

There was still time for Tompkins to make two good saves, but Town clinched a final four spot after a tremendous cup tie and an amazing second half.

The Amps beat Raunds 5-0 at home in October and and they made it hot for them at Kiln Lane when they beat them 5-1 on Saturday.

Good work by Drew Roberts gave Gutzmore the opportunity to put Town in front early on before the hosts levelled with a 20 yard shot from Luke Aridegbe.

But Ampthill found a new gear and Kienan Malone headed home a corner before Spencer O'Leary drilled home the third and Sam Holmes made it 4-1 by the break.

Another strike from Holmes made it 5-1 in the second period for their second consecutive win in Northants.

The Amps continue a busy period on Saturday when they go to Moulton before a Tuesday trip to Winslow.

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