Football: Non-League Notebook: Jockeys' chase for Cup gold

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The Independent Online
FIFTY-SIX non-League clubs will be engaged in FA Cup combat tomorrow in a quest to join the three sides from outside the Football League already assured of a place in Monday's first-round draw. Some are making their first FA Cup appearance of the season in the fourth qualifying round, while others - like Newmarket Town - have battled their way through from August's preliminary round.

The little Suffolk club, from the country's horse-racing capital, are naturally known as the Jockeys. They have had to clear four stiff hurdles to reach this stage of the FA Cup. Langford, from the Campri South Midlands League, were thumped 4-0, then the Diadora League side Tilbury were overcome after a replay. A tremendous 6-2 win in a replay at Baldock, of the Beazer Homes League, followed. The next victims, beaten 1-0 in Suffolk, were Grays Athletic, whose Diadora Premier rivals, Hayes - victors at Fulham last season - are tomorrow's visitors to Newmarket's Cricket Field Road ground.

'There's a great atmosphere in the town, and we should have a good crowd - especially if the local stable lads can get time off work,' John How, Newmarket's secretary, said yesterday. 'Unfortunately we've had the kiss of death - we're the BBC Radio 5 'team to follow', and every club they've featured have been knocked out]' The Jockeys are near the bottom of the Jewson Eastern League's Premier Division, but, due to cup commitments, they have played just five league games while others above them have played as many as 16.

Mark Lawrenson, the 35-year- old former Liverpool and Republic of Ireland defender, was reporting for Radio 5 on the Anfield club's European Cup-Winners' Cup defeat in Moscow yesterday. Tomorrow he will be in Chesham United's squad for their FA Cup tie at Solihull Borough, who have two former First Division veterans of their own: Paul Dyson and Keith Bertschin.

Despite their Cup distractions, Chesham lead the Diadora Premier by three points, after Wednesday's 7-1 home win over Stevenage and last weekend's 1-0 triumph at second-placed Enfield, where Lawrenson was faced by his former Tottenham and England adversary, Graham Roberts.

Tommy Tynan, who scored 254 League goals in a career which took him from Liverpool to Doncaster Rovers via Plymouth Argyle, Newport County and five other clubs, is the new player-manager of Goole Town, of the HFS Loans League Premier Division.