For the first time in four seasons, Hanwell Town managed to win an FA Cup tie on Saturday when they narrowly edged out United Counties League side Wootton Blue Cross 3-2, writes Bob Fisher.
Town will now play Ryman Division One North side Aveley at home in the Preliminary Round on August 30.
Both sides squandered chances to take the lead in the opening stages. Wootton's Junior George fired across the face of Town's goal, while at the other end, an even better chance fell to George Mapes but his shot was blocked by keeper Michael Dangerfield.
David King for Wootton had a close-range effort ruled out for offside and George missed another chance before Scarlett gave Town the lead in the 29th minute.
He latched onto a good through ball by striking partner Blaise O'Brien to shoot past the advancing Dangerfield.
Town doubled their lead two minutes before the interval when from Jason Tucker's high floated free-kick, Town's skipper Matt Kidson rose above Dangerfield to head the ball home despite being caught in the face by the keeper's intended punch to safety.
Town's two goal lead was very brief as two minutes into the second half, a high corner to the far post was headed back across goal by Dave King and Jonny Clark easily beat Jakub Machlowski from close range.
On the hour, Wootton equalised when a desperate mix-up between keeper Machlowski and Daley Joseph gave Sam Donadio the opportunity to poke the ball into the vacant net. From a comfortable two goal lead, Town were now struggling but they went back into the lead when Adam Jackson fouled Warren Williams in the penalty area and a spot kick was awarded with O'Brien then beating Dangerfield from the spot.
Town had to endure some nervy moments before their place in the next round was secured.
This Saturday (3pm), Town meet Biggleswade United at home in the league and are hosts again on Tuesday night (7.45pm) when Cockfosters are the visitors.