Date Added 08/07/2017

Bearsted drawn away to Eastbourne Town in first ever FA Cup appearance

The Bears have been drawn against Eastbourne Town of the Southern Combination Football League in the Extra Preliminary Round of the FA Cup, the first stage of the competition, with the tie to be played away at Eastbourne’s Saffrons Ground on 5th August.
After completing our first ever season in the Southern Counties East Premier Division this year in 12th place, we will compete in the competition for the first time in our 122 year history. We finished last season season strongly, remaining unbeaten in their final five games with four wins and a draw, and now look forward to entering the FA Cup as a reward for all of the hard work put in by the club to reach Step 5 last season and complete all of the necessary ground grading requirements.
Eastbourne, who finished fifth in the Southern Combination League last season, are one of the oldest clubs in Sussex having been founded in 1881.Their best ever FA Cup appearance saw them reach the 4th Qualifying Round in 1967/68 season.
The draw, which was made on Friday (7th July), also included the Preliminary Round should the club progress to the next stage, where it would face the winner of the match between Sutton Common Rovers of the Combined Counties League and fellow Southern Counties East League opponents Canterbury City, to be played on Saturday 19th August. £1,500 in prize money is on offer for the winners of the Extra Preliminary Round and a further £1,925 if teams can progress past the Preliminary Round stage.
The draw was also made for the FA Vase at the same time, which has pitted us against fellow Southern Counties East league opponents AFC Croydon Athletic in the First Qualifying Round, to be played away at The Mayfield Stadium on Saturday 9th September. The winners will go on to play against Southwick or Broadbridge Heath of the Southern Combination Leagues, on the 23rd September.
First team Manager Kevin Stevens said ‘For me personally, I am proud as 1st team manager to be part of such an exciting time for the club. We’ve made huge strides on and off the field and this is an achievement everyone at the club deserves. The lads gained a lot of experience from our first season playing Step 5 last year and like me, they are all now looking forward to the trip down to Eastbourne and the possibility of a little cup run’.
Chairman Duncan Andrews said ‘This shows how much our club has grown in stature in recent years. We would have loved a home draw in either the FA Cup or FA Vase after the improvements we’ve made at the ground but that opportunity will hopefully come if we can get through the first couple of rounds. We are excited by the prospect of testing ourselves against these teams and the potential to create a fairy tale story that will live long in the history of the club.’
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