Emirates FA Cup
Third round qualifying
Taunton Town 4, Truro City 2

TOBY Holmes' hat-trick led Taunton Town into the fourth round qualifying stage of this season's FA Cup, as the Peacocks pulled off a highly impressive victory over Truro City on Tuesday night.

The Southern League rivals went head-to-head at the Cygnet Health Care Stadium, just a fortnight after a 1-1 draw at Truro in the league, and the first goal arrived after just three minutes.

Holmes has hit the ground running since his move from Salisbury this summer, and he followed up his early strike with a second goal 15 minutes later, pouncing after captain Nick Grimes flicked a Jay Foulston free-kick into his path.

Truro are considered favourites for the league title this season, however, and showed their ability to fight back with two goals in two minutes.

Alex Battle curled home an effort in the 34th minute, and soon it was 2-2 as ex-Taunton player Ryan Brett found the net with the aid of a sizeable deflection.

Having lost their lead, it would have been easy for the Peacocks to fold, but they were back ahead just two minutes into the second half, Holmes completing his hat-trick after reacting quickest to Jamie Short's cross coming back off the post.

Holmes' strike partner Gethyn Hill restored the hosts' two-goal lead seven minutes after that, heading in from a Foulston corner.

Truro were unable to recover for a second time, and so it's Taunton who take their place in the next round of the FA Cup - just one win away from the first round proper.

Taunton Town: Lloyd Irish, Jamie Short, Jay Foulston, Ben Adelsbury, Nick Grimes (c), Jake Wannell, Joe Guest, Ollie Chamberlain, Dan Sullivan, Gethyn Hill (Lee Lucas 79), Toby Holmes (Owen Howe 62). Subs not used: Dan McBeam, Ross Staley, Jordan Copp, Jake Mawford, Jamie Price. Attendance: 584

The fourth round qualifying draw will be made at 1pm tomorrow (Thursday), with the next match in the competition to be played on Saturday, October 24.

The Peacocks return to league action this coming Saturday (3pm), at home to Metropolitan Police.


Taunton head of football Rob Dray told the County Gazette: "There was a combination of several things [behind the victory] - our attitude, and the mentality in the group.

"It's so tough to go 2-0 up, then a defensive mistake and a massive deflection and it's 2-2 - that can affect you, but we didn't let our heads drop.

"We regrouped at half-time and tweaked a few things, pushing Jamie Short and Dan Sullivan up a bit to occupy their wing-backs.

"I'm still learning about this group of players all the time - they're not the finished article by any means."

On Toby Holmes he said: "He's a finisher but is also unselfish, which is what we want.

"Gethyn [Hill] and Owen [Howe] do a lot of work for him, that enables him to score goals - it's a real group effort.

"They all back each other, there's no bitterness there, and that's great to see when you're building a culture at the club."

On the draw for the next round, Dray added: "Anything at home - just not another derby!

"We've had three derby matches already this season and they can be quite draining.

"We have no preference [for the next round] - we'd take anyone at home."