Daventry Town boss Darran Foster was full of pride at his team’s performance in reaching the NFA Hillier Senior Cup Final at Sixfields.
But he admitted that Corby Town’s extra class told as Daventry were beaten 3-1 at the home of Northampton Town on Tuesday night.
Daventry started the game the better of the two sides, and dominated proceedings for the opening 30 minutes, with Corby’s former Cobblers goalkeeper Paul Walker forced into good saves from Ashley Robinson and Nat Liburd.
But it was Corby who led at half-time thanks to an individual effort from Josh Moreman.
Daventry made a stirring start to the second half and Walker had already been forced into another excellent stop from Liburd before they equalised on 52 minutes, Callum Burgess heading home Neil King’s pinpoint free-kick.
Daventry’s tails were up briefly, but it was Corby who gradually took control.
The Steelmen restored their lead when another ex-Cobblers man, Greg Kaziboni, showed blistering pace down the right wing to set up Ryan Semple for a simple finish, and then Paul Malone was allowed a free header from a corner to wrap things up eight minutes from time.
“For the first 20 minutes or so I thought we were very good, and we had three really good chances and we should have taken them,” said Foster.
“If you don’t take those chances against good teams then you will get punished for it, and Corby punished us.
“They have a lot of pace, hit us on the counter, and they killed us with the first and second goals, it was pure pace.
“We got ourselves back in the game at 1-1, it was a good goal, and their keeper has made two great saves and they made a big difference.
“But once they scored the second, we started to die in the last half-hour.
“They took control and we found it hard to come back from that.
“We huffed and puffed, but we didn’t have enough left in the tank. We have just played six games in 13 days and it was tough on the lads, especially against a team like Corby.”
But Foster wasn’t feeling down about the defeat, and said: “I am really proud, we have done well.
“We have beaten Brackley and Kettering in this competition, the league form’s been tremendous, we have only lose one of the last 15, and the lads have enjoyed it.
“Of course they are disappointed, but I am proud of them.
“It was a great occasion, we had a good following, and I wish we could get that at home!
“The fans will also be disappointed, but from what they were expecting at the start of the season, I think we’ve bounced back really well.”