Peaks happy as Diamonds fight back to earn a replay

Matt Gearing celebrates his late equaliser for AFC Rushden & Diamonds as they drew 1-1 with Bedford Town in the FA Cup. Picture by Mike Capps/www.kappasport.co.uk
Matt Gearing celebrates his late equaliser for AFC Rushden & Diamonds as they drew 1-1 with Bedford Town in the FA Cup. Picture by Mike Capps/www.kappasport.co.uk
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Andy Peaks hailed the character of his AFC Rushden & Diamonds side as they battled back to earn a replay with Bedford Town in the preliminary round of the FA Cup.

Diamonds looked to be heading out after the Southern League Division One Central side, who are managed by former Wellingborough Town boss Craig Adams, took the lead through Rob Parker four minutes before half-time.

AFC Rushden & Diamonds v Bedford Town, FA Challenge  Cup, Premliminary,

AFC Rushden & Diamonds v Bedford Town, FA Challenge Cup, Premliminary,

But the ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League Premier Division outfit preserved their unbeaten record so far this season when Matt Gearing popped up with an 86th-minute equaliser.

It means the two teams will do it all again at the Eyrie on Tuesday night as they fight for the right to visit Hendon in the first qualifying round on September 13.

And Diamonds boss Peaks was pleased to see his team “create something out of nothing” in front of over 700 fans at the Dog & Duck.

“We didn’t play particularly well to be honest,” he said.

“They scored a good goal on the breakaway and they did a good job of stopping the game after that and we struggled to get going.

“We knew Craig would have his team well organised and they were.

“But I think our lads showed plenty of character, they kept going right until the end.

“I always felt we could come back into it and that’s what happened.

“We almost created something out of nothing and we are still in the competition, which is the most important thing.”