23 November 1983
FA Cup 1st Round Replay
Maidstone United (a)
EXETER City's season of travail continued at Maidstone last night when they went out of the FA Cup to the Alliance League side for the second time in five years. Sadly for the Devon side the result was all that they deserved for they never took advantage of occasional lapses in the Maidstone midfield and came into the match only in the final ten minutes. Maidstone justifiably went ahead in the 31st minute through striker Paul Lazarus.
Lazarus, who had turned down the chance to go into hospital for a minor throat operation after waiting four months for a bed, rushed in to the near post to head in a corner from Billy Hughes. Maidstone piled on the Exeter agony in the second half and three times went close to increasing their lead. They did so with 14 minutes left when Mick Dingwall nodded in a corner from Nigel Donn. Exeter’s Steve Neville, always busy reduced the arrears two minutes later but it was a forlorn effort from a side who had already looked well beaten.
There were moments of glory for the small clubs in the FA Cup as well. Alliance League side Maidstone beat Exeter 2-1 to earn a second-round tie against fellow non-leaguers Worcester City. Already their manager, Bill Williams is thinking in terms of a money-spinning third round clash with a First Division side. "We handled Exeter well in both games,"he said, "It's not too much to hope for a First Division side down here in the third round now"