See Match Highlights Here: http://www.thenationalleague.org.uk/match-info/match-centre/1-2850879
If Truro City are going to win promotion from National League South into the National League they are going to have to do it the hard way - away from their Treyew Road home.
Saturday’s crucial 1-1 draw at Hampton and Richmond Borough in their final game was enough to give City the seventh and final play-off place and they will now have to return again to the Beveree Stadium on Wednesday evening (7.45pm) for their elimination play-off game against the Middlesex side, who have lost just once there in the league all season. If they win through that tough test they would then again have to travel for the semi-final next Sunday to Essex to play third-placed Chelmsford City.
And victory would earn them a place in the promotion final on Sunday May 13, but as the lowest placed play-off qualifier, they would yet again definitely be away.
But all that is not worrying manager Lee Hodges, especially as City have the fourth best away record in the league.
He was just delighted his team had reached the play-offs after only avoiding the drop last season with a game to spare.
He said: “The pressure is off us now. Before the start of the season, everyone expected us to be relegated and I received a lot of criticism.
“We have massively over-achieved and it is some achievement to reach the play-offs. The players have been brilliant. The whole group has played its part.”
And the City manager had no worries about returning to play Hampton & Richmond Borough, who City beat away in the FA Cup earlier in the season to reach the first round proper for the first time in the club’s history.
He added: “It is just one more game and all the pressure is on them now. They were already in the play-offs today, whereas we needed a point to make sure of our place.”
City got off to the perfect start at the Beveree Stadium when midfielder Tom Owen-Evans headed them ahead after just three minutes, following great work by skipper and man of the match Ben Gerring.
Showing no fear, City continued to take the match to the home side and really should have been further ahead by half time.
“We dominated the first period and could have been up by a couple more goals, but we did not take our chances,” said Hodges.
Aaron Lamont was denied by home keeper Sent Dieng, while Rocky Neal and strike partner Tyler Harvey also went close.
The second half though was a different affair as the home side pushed for an equaliser, which duly arrived just after the hour mark when Jack Cook powered home a near post header.
“We then had to dig in and were on the back foot, though we did get out when we could,” said Hodges.
City were also indebted to young on-loan Bristol City keeper Joe Wollacott who made a stunning late save to keep out a great Taurean Roberts strike.
So both teams will have to do it all again on Wednesday, which will be the second time they have met each other in successive games this season, after drawing 1-1 at Treyew in the league, before City’s FA Cup triumph seven days later back in October.
Hodges hopes to have a full strength squad to chose from, with striker Cody Cooke coming on for the final 20 minutes in place of Harvey after being out with a hamstring twinge.
City: Wollacott; Gerring (capt), Palmer, Hartridge; Thompson, Harding (Keats 90), Lamont, Owen-Evans, Riley-Lowe; Harvey (Cooke 70), Neal (Allen 85).
Subs (not used): Palfrey, Yetton.
Yellow cards: Gerring, Lamont, Thompson.
Goals: Owen-Evans (3) 0-1, Cook (64) 1-1