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There were a couple of surprise team changes before the game. The return of Wycombe's Prodigal Son Keith Scott didn't happen as he pulled out with a injury picked up in training. For Wycombe Paul McCarthy also failed a fitness test and Jason Cousins was called in to cover. Stephen Bywater continued in goal with Martin Taylor still out with a hamstring problem and Chris Vinnicombe replaced the injured Alan Beeton. Steve Brown was dropped in favour of Paul Emblen.
Wycombe kicked towards the Reading contingent at the Hillbottom Road End in the first-half and the traveling fans were left complaining when Jimmy Crawford was booked within sixty seconds of the start for a foul on Vinnicombe. Worse was to come for The Royals followers when the goal flurry got underway with only 7 minutes on the clock - Dave Carroll's swinging free-kick from the right-wing being looped into the net by the head of Keith Ryan. Bernal and Parkinson were both booked by the over fussy referee before the visitors had their best spell starting on 29 minutes when Nicky Forster headed against the base of the Wycombe post after a Darren Caskey corner. On 42 minutes Nicky Forster cut inside Bates from the left but he blasted the ball into the side netting. Wycombe held out and went into the break 2-0 up when another Carroll free-kick, this time from the left, found its way past Scott Howie in the Reading goal and confirmed the 'keepers nightmare in front of his own fans.
Half-time Wycombe 2 Reading 0
Howie was replaced during the break by Peter Van Der Kwaak but he could do nothing to stop Wycombe's third goal on 53 minutes. Carroll played the ball through from midfield to Emblen who squared for Devine to tap in from 6 yards. Five minutes later Reading were allowed a life-line when Forster was given a free header after a high ball in from the left by Lee Hodges. Reading's frustration overflowed on the hour mark when Jimmy Crawford was sent-off a late and dangerous tackle on Carroll - Crawford had already been booked and referee Clive Wilkes did the Reading player a favour by showing him a second yellow before showing him the way down the tunnel. The best goal of the game came on 69 minutes when Emblen flicked the ball down the left wing and Devine ran on with extreme confidence before pulling the trigger and blazing the ball past a stunned Van Der Kwaak. Amazingly, within a minute Reading were allowed another glimmer of hope when more X-cert defending from Wycombe saw Forster force the ball home from a couple of yards. The game was finally sealed with eight minutes left on the clock when substitute Andy Baird headed through for Devine to coolly dance the ball past Van Der Kwaak. Bywater showed his future potential by stopping a low shot on 84 minutes but there was still time for Reading to grab another goal when Cousins challenge on Forster in the Wycombe area brought a '9.9 dive' - Caskey sent Bywater the wrong way from the spot but by then the rainbow had formed over Adams Park and it was Wycombe who grabbed the gold at the final whistle.
Full-time Wycombe 5 Reading 3
WYCOMBE TEAM: Bywater, Lawrence, Cousins, Vinnicombe, Bates, Ryan, Carroll, Simpson (sub 91 Harkin), Emblen (sub 77 Baird), Devine, McSporran (sub 75 Brown) subs not used Rogers and Osborn Att:7,042 (3,000 empty places???)
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