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Keziah Martin plays his part as Harriers pull off FA Cup upset

Keziah Martin played virtually the entire match in Kidderminster Harriers’s 2-1 FA Cup upset over Championship side Reading at the weekend.

Keziah Martin and his Kidderminster Harriers team-mates pulled off a stunning upset to extend their impressive run in the English FA Cup at the weekend.

Furthermore, they did so the hard way having come from behind to upstage visiting Sky Bet Championship side Reading 2-1 in a tight third-round contest at Aggborough Stadium on Saturday.

George Puscas put the visitors — who play four leagues higher in the English football pyramid — ahead on the stroke of halftime, but the home side hit back after the break with goals from Sam Austin and Amari Morgan-Smith completing the upset and securing a famous victory.

Midfielder Martin played virtually the entire match before being substituted in the fourth of 12 minutes of stoppage time.

“I was so proud, first and foremost for the players, club, chairman and fans,” Russell Penn, the Kidderminster manager, told BBC Radio 5 Live. “Everyone deserves it.

"The chairman is buzzing. Did we expect to win? No, we thought we had a chance but we are shell-shocked.

“We deserved the victory and the chairman was like the Grinch at Christmas — his smile went from ear to ear.“

National League North side Kidderminster, the lowest-ranked team left in the competition, will now host Premier League side West Ham United in the fourth round to take place over the weekend of February 4 to 7.

“This is what the FA Cup dream is all about," Penn added. “I sweated hot and cold all day worrying about the draw.

“You just want that plum tie, to be rewarded for what we did yesterday and we got that. I think my phone will go into meltdown.

“I will be going up against one of the most respected British managers in David Moyes, which is fantastic for me.

“I know he respects the competition, the lower leagues and West Ham are on the up. What a tie!

“Hopefully we can write some more history.”

The two sides last met in the FA Cup in a fifth-round tie in 1994 at Kidderminster’s ground, where West Ham came away with a narrow 1-0 victory to snap their host’s finest run in the competition.

Boreham Wood, the other remaining non-league club in the competition, beat League One side AFC Wimbledon 2-0 at home on Saturday to secure a fourth-round cup tie away to Championship leaders Bournemouth.

Martin joined Kidderminster as a free agent after a one-year stint with Sky Bet League One side Barnsley’s under-23 team after agreeing to the terms of an undisclosed deal in September of 2020.

He is among a list of Bermudians having represented the club which includes Milan Butterfield, J’Nai Butterfield-Steede and Knory Scott.

The son of Gregg Foggo Jr, the former St George’s Cup Match captain, came through the youth ranks at Solihull Moors during which he time he was handed a trial with Premier League side Burnley before being signed by Barnsley.

Martin wasn’t the only Bermudian involved in the FA Cup at the weekend as compatriot Nahki Wells virtually played the entire match in Bristol City’s 1-0 extra-time loss at home to Championship rivals Fulham at Ashton Gate.

The Bermuda captain was one of five changes Nigel Pearson, the City manager, made to his starting squad and went close to giving the hosts an early lead when his free-kick from the edge of the area soared just inches over the bar.

He also had a header saved late in regulation time before being replaced in the 90th minute.

Harry Wilson scored what ultimately proved to be the match winner to end City’s run in the competition in the 105th minute.

The Welsh international’s cross from a short corner managed to elude everyone and ended up in the far corner of the net.

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Published January 11, 2022 at 8:01 am (Updated January 12, 2022 at 7:56 am)

Keziah Martin plays his part as Harriers pull off FA Cup upset

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