‘Fantastic journey’ is just beginning for Berko in the FA Vase

Number 11 Josh Chamberlain challenges for the ball for Berkhamsted. Picture (c) Ray Canham

Number 11 Josh Chamberlain challenges for the ball for Berkhamsted. Picture (c) Ray Canham

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Berkhamsted coach Tommy Garratt hailed the ‘character and desire’ of the Comrades players following their 4-2 win over Hullbridge Sports in the last-32 of the FA Vase.

Alex Campana hit a hat-trick and Bradley O’Donovan also netted as Berko ran out 4-2 victors to take a step closer to a dream final at Wembley Stadium.

Alex Campana was the match-winner for Berkhamsted. Picture (c) Ray Canham

Alex Campana was the match-winner for Berkhamsted. Picture (c) Ray Canham

“We’ve got some very special players and they showed both the character and desire to win the game,” said Garratt.

“It was a fantastic day for the club and getting to the last-16 is a real achievement, but it’s just really the start of a what could be a fantastic journey.

“It’s hard to believe we’re potentially three games away from playing at Wembley, which of course would be unbelievable, but we’d be foolish to start dreaming just yet.

“I’ve always said it but I’ll say it again; Berko are a great club and the attention we’re now getting is only what those behind the scenes deserve.”

It was a fantastic day for the club and getting to the last-16 is a real achievement, but it’s just really the start of a what could be a fantastic journey.

Berkhamsted FC coach Tommy Garratt

Campana was the hat-trick hero for Berko, and Garratt reserved special praise for the former Watford man.

“The man of the hour this week was Alex Campana,” said Garratt. “His pace, composure and eventual directness was simply too much for them.

“He took his first goal fantastically in a position we’ve worked on with him; his second was a reaction tap-in before anyone else had moved, and his third – created by bright young thing Jordan Gilbert – summed him up.

“He ran down the left channel, turned the defender left then right, then left him for dead before side-footing the ball past the keeper’s dive.”

The Berkhamsted players celebrate during their win over Hullbridge. Picture (c) Ray Canham

The Berkhamsted players celebrate during their win over Hullbridge. Picture (c) Ray Canham

Garratt also hailed the Berkhamsted staff who ensured that the pitch was in a playable condition, despite heavy overnight rain.

“People might look at the result and give credit to the players, and rightfully so,” he said. “But you’ve got to highlight those involved in actually getting the game on and ensuring that the pitch was in the perfect state it was.”

Berkhamsted had been in indifferent form going into Saturday’s game, but Garratt believes that the win can give the Comrades a real lift.

He continued: “After the two last results, which were awful, Saturday’s game saw us get back into the flow of things and the boys played as we all know they can.

“Since the Tring game we’ve worked really hard. I wanted to justify that it was a blip; we’ve been let down by availability and commitment in those games and that was dealt with immediately.

“We’ve added to the squad, had a few stern one-on-ones, but not had a big panic because there wasn’t loads wrong. It was simply a case of getting back on track and we’ve done just that.

“We’ve now got another home draw against one of three North East sides and that could turn out to be a real tough one if last year’s winner North Shields get through.

“We’ve also got to replicate this belief and desire into our league form starting away at Holmer Green tomorrow night.”