As a result of yesterday’s goalless draw with Truro City at Edgar Street, the Bulls are now set to travel to Torquay on Wednesday evening for the FA Cup 2nd Qualifying Round replay.
Here is the Talking Bull Away Guide complied by our very own ground-guide guru Simon Wright.
Let me remind everyone of the words I used to introduce the first match preview; “Not a particularly kind FA Cup draw.” Others disagreed when I pointed out City were better away than at home, and had a new manager to impress.
With both sides out of form and struggling to find the net, I thought the match at Edgar Street would lack goals and that’s how it turned out. Club form for the replay makes grim reading. Truro have played five “home” games, drawing one, and losing four, although they have scored 5 times. As we know, Harry White’s winner at Curzon is the only goal Hereford have scored on the road. To be positive, there has to a winner on Wednesday with both sides seeking the £9,000 prize money.
A reminder City play their home games in Devon because they were given 9 days’ notice to leave their own ground in July. But the ground was sold back in 2014, so understandably the developers’ patience was wearing thin. There aren’t any other grounds in Cornwall with a Step 2 grading.
Being given barely four days’ notice for a night game in Torquay – let’s be honest, very few of our supporters will travel as it’s a 300-mile round trip from the shire. I imagine there was lurid swearing in the dressing room afterwards with some difficult conversations needed with partners and employers. With suspensions, injuries, the youth match the previous night, and work commitments, it’s hard to say what sort of team Hereford can field.
Plainmoor is out of the town centre, up one of Torquay’s many hills. Given that Truro’s last home “gate” was 138 in a 6,500-capacity ground, understandably they normally just open Bristow’s Bench. That’s a new 1,700 stand built in 2012 along one touchline. Bristow is the name of a former Torquay director. Expect an atmosphere similar to that of the behind closed doors game at Didcot. In a strange way, that helps the loan players on both sides because they are used to playing without an audience. Trouble is, Truro have a lot more loanees than we do.
I can’t see the attendance being above 300. For the home supporters, they have a 200+ mile round trip at night to back a team whose home form is shocking. Some City supporters are already thinking they’ve lost their club so what happens to that team in Devon isn’t anything to do with them. Just to remind everyone, Truro players either live in Devon or are loanees. The manager lives in Exeter. No reserve team, no ladies team, no social club in Cornwall, nothing tangible in their own county to call their own. Just to make matters worse, the two Truro Supporters Groups are at loggerheads. Puts our own frustrations into perspective.
The excellent “Boots and Laces” supporters club is outside the ground, open every day and directly run by the Gulls. When in the Football League, this was always known as one of the best clubs to visit. Gulls Ale at 3.7 strength is recommended. You probably won’t need to go anywhere else but if you must, try the George Inn on Babbacombe Road comes recommended. Single room pub owned by mine host. The house beer is Doom Bar, thankfully, there will be a guest ale.
At Torquay, there is only street parking available as in one street per spectator.
Getting There :
By Car: 300 miles return (TQ1 3PS). At end of M5 follow tA38 and then turn left onto the A380. On reaching Kingskerwell, take the first exit at the large roundabout (where is a McDonalds & Sainsburys on one side) onto the A3022 towards Torquay. After one mile, turn left towards Babbacombe (signposted Babbacombe (A379)). After 1 mile turn left into Westhill Road for Warbro Road. Torquay United is signposted on nearing the ground.
By Train: Easy there. The 8 hour wait for the first train back may be tedious. Mind you, the English Riviera is a great place to stop over with a vast array of Bed & Breakfast guest houses and hotels on offer. So why not make it a midweek break?
By Coach: Reg is running a 17-seat minibus. Leaving Radfords at 2.30pm with a refreshment stop. £25 per seat. Bookings as ever via Hereford Awaydays Facebook.