Watford suffered a cup upset as a Billy Clifford penalty gave Boreham Wood a 1-0 win in the Hertfordshire Senior Cup.

The Hornets never really got going and failed to seriously trouble their Vanarama National League opponent’s throughout the 90 minutes at Meadow Park.

Boreham Wood will face Bishop Stortford in the next round of the competition and were good value for their victory.

Boreham Wood had the better of the early exchanges and were keeping the ball well but there was little to choose between the two sides in the opening ten minutes.

A reckless lunge from Josh Doherty gave the home side the first genuine chance of the game as he brought down Delano Sam-Yorke inside the box for a clear penalty.

Clifford stepped up and sent a low right-footed drive to Nathan Gartside’s right to give Boreham Wood the lead.

The breakthrough stirred the Hornets into life and they almost hit back immediately as Ashley Charles fired a deflected effort just over the bar from the edge of the box.

The ever busy Clifford went close to doubling the Boreham Wood lead as he let fly from 25 yards just short of the half hour mark.

His curling effort was heading for the top right corner and required an intervention from Gartside to turn it wide.

Mahlondo Martin did superbly to win the ball on the Boreham Wood right, drive inside and force a low save from James Russell at his near post as Watford searched for a route back into the game.

Watford had produced little to concern the Boreham wood defence and the homes side’s energy76 was causing them problems.

Boreham Wood should have been two up just before half-time as a deep corner caused confusion in the Watford six yard box.

Sam-Yorke hit a fierce volley from point plank range and Gartside did superbly to throw himself in front of the ball and deny a certain goal.

The half ended in a heated exchange between Sam-Yorke and Alfie Young, who had replaced the injured Joel Ekstrand, and with an uninspiring Watford needing to find a vast improvement in the second 45 minutes.

A Watford fight back showed little sign of materialising as they struggled to build any momentum in the early stages of the second half.

In fact, it was the hosts who were showing the greater attacking intent and they went close to grabbing a second as Junior Morias struck a dipping effort from just outside the box.

The ball bounced in front of Gartside who could only fumble back into the penalty box where an onrushing Boreham Wood player almost turned home.

With 73 minutes on the clock a driven cross gave Watford’s Alex Jakubiak a free header from 10 yards out.

The forward could only make the slightest of contacts though and the ball trickled out harmlessly for a goal kick.

Watford were beginning to grow into the game now and Sean Murray was unlucky not to find an equaliser as his shot from distance deflected just wide of the post.

That was the closest Watford came to an equaliser and in truth they failed to pose a consistent threat to their national League opponents.

Boreham Wood: Russell; Mawer, Stephens, Devera, Garrard, Howell, Clifford, Whichelow (C), Sam-Yorke (Lucas 72), Beattie, Morias (Kamdjo 90)

Subs not used: Doe; Gileceea, Shakes

Watford: Gartside; Eleftheriou, Ekstrand (Young 43), Hoban (Hall 45), Doherty (C), Stewart, Charles, Lewis (Mensah 64), Murray, Martin, Jakubiak

Subs not used: Simpson, Obi

Referee: Mr L Grimesy