David Ashdown's Sports Picture Diary: Kettering Town v Fulham

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The Independent Football

For me the The FA Cup is all about the giant killings, the little clubs with a total weekly wage bill of less than one Premier League player and playing the game in ramshackle stadiums with evocative terracing.

I was at the fourth round tie between Kettering and Fulham on Saturday, and the match fitted the bill perfectly. The non-league side's ground was a mix-match of one stand with seats and three sides with terraces.

I was concentrating on photographing the non-league team's attacks as I knew if Kettering could beat Fulham, or at least manage a draw, it would have been the biggest story of the day.

I was using two Nikon D3 cameras, one with a 300mm F2.8 lens and the other with a 70mm-200mm F2.8 lens, I also had to hand a 14mm F2.8 lens which has a very wide angle.

I was sitting near the corner flag in the second half, my thinking being that using a 300mm from the corner is the perfect focal length lens for the goal, and also, if there was a corner I could quickly move myself, take one of the lens' off and put on the 14mm, the idea being to show the atmosphere of the game.

It can be a bit risky getting up and running round to get behind the corner flag as it doesn't leave much time to get in position.

As Richard Graham ran forward to take the corner I decided to go with him. With a very wide angle lens, everything looks much further away than it actually is, and as I looked through the camera, I noticed the FA Cup board in the bottom of the frame. As I moved round to get in position I ended up getting my foot caught in the FA Cup board. Thankfully, and just in time, I stopped my self falling over it - it would have been very embarrassing if I had.

The picture above was taken at 1/650 second at F5.6. The moment was about as good as it gets with the sun setting at the far end of the ground and the light picking out the crowd. It's just a shame Kettering lost, but at least photographically I won.

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