After reaching the FA Cup Third Round for the first time since 2013/14, Kidderminster Harriers of the National League North have been rewarded with a home draw against Championship side Reading.
By James Bishop
Royals await Harriers in Third Round
A whopping 79 places separate Kidderminster Harriers of the National League North and Reading in the Championship, with the pair set to meet in the FA Cup Third Round.
Having started their FA Cup campaign against Sporting Khalsa all the way back in September, Kidderminster have since played four ties before making it to the Third Round.
In what has been a difficult but rewarding campaign for the Harriers, another famous matchup at Aggborough Stadium looks set to capture the headlines.
National League North side take yet another scalp in the cup
Having knocked out Grimsby Town in the previous round, Kidderminster drew another National League outfit in FC Halifax Town at the next stage of the FA Cup.
This affair was set up to be an eventful one at a sold-out Aggborough, as whoever was successful would go on into the Third Round draw and face the possibility of a trip to a Premier League big boy.
The Harriers came into this game with an unchanged side from the previous round which had performed so well against Grimsby, whilst Halifax made one change from the previous round, with Tom Bradbury making way for Jesse Debrah.
It didn't take long for Harriers to open the scoring, when Ashley Hemmings played a low cross into the area which, in his stride, was tapped home by Amari Morgan-Smith - his fourth goal in the FA Cup this season.
Being played at a tempo Halifax were unable to maintain, the Harriers would make it 2-0 moments later, when Morgan-Smith this time became provider, heading the ball back to Hemmings. With his back to goal, he turned and fired his shot into the roof of the Halifax net to double Kidderminster's lead.
The hosts kept up their pressure late into the second half but with no close chances to speak of, the half came to a close with Kidderminster being two goals to the good.
Kidderminster hold out for FA Cup shock
Halifax started the second-half brighter on the ball, however, it was the Harriers who continued to threaten the Halifax goal, forcing Sam Johnson into a number of smart saves.
Peter Wild attempted to change the tide by bringing on Martin Woods and birthday boy Harvey Gilmour, but to no avail as Harriers secured their place in the second round.
The result marked a historic day for National League North Kidderminster, with a bouncing Aggborough Stadium treated to an evening all 4,000 plus supporters will never forget.