Published: 16:50, 18 September 2021
| Updated: 18:30, 18 September 2021
Ade Azeez bagged a hat-trick as Dartford eased through in the FA Cup with a comfortable derby win over Hythe on Saturday.
It was a first win as Darts manager for Steve King in this competition and, apart from a scare midway through the first half, it was a straight-forward day at the office for the National League South side.
Hythe boss Steve Watt saw his side keep their shape well but injuries on the day didn't help their cause and it was a bridge too far for the Isthmian South East outfit.
Darts made five changes to their line-up from the team that drew 1-1 with Tonbridge last week, debutant Michael Kedman among those coming in.
They got off to a perfect start when Danny Leonard delivered an excellent right-wing cross for Azeez to head beyond keeper Will Godman.
Darts were in control for the opening 20 minutes but were given a scare with virtually Hythe's first attack. A neat exchange saw former Gills midfielder Darren Oldaker play in Alex Brown and he skipped past Kedman on the edge of the box before firing past keeper Craig King on 22 minutes.
Hythe gained belief and three minutes later, King - making his first start of the season - had to turn over Liam Smith's rasping long-range drive.
Darts continued to look to Leonard for inspiration and he didn't fail to deliver. Leonard gave stand-in full-back Jarred Trespaderne a torrid time and when he cut inside his goalbound shot was handled by Tom Wynter.
Referee Oliver Mackey pointed to the spot and Azeez sent Godman the wrong way to restore Dartford's advantage on 29 minutes.
Oldaker had a long-range free-kick pushed away by King before Darts went 3-1 ahead on 34 minutes. Leonard ran at Trespaderne, forcing the defender back, before firing low into the far corner.
Leonard was at it against straight after the break, getting to the byline and cutting his cross back for Jack Jebb, who somehow blazed over when it seemed easier to score.
Jebb took a quick free-kick just before he was replaced but Leonard's near-post shot was turned behind for a corner by Godman.
The game was all over with 13 minutes left when Kedman crossed from the left and Hythe centre-back Eli Benoit turned the ball into his own net.
Hythe substitute Thomas Walsley went close to pulling one back while substitute Jake Robinson missed a good chance at the other end to make it five after Noor Husin led a counter attack.
The last word went to Azeez, however, who volleyed in from close range in the 89th minute to complete his hat-trick after good work by Husin.
Dartford: King, Wynter, Kedman, Husin, Essam, Bonner, Leonard (Dalling 70mins), Allen, Roberts (Robinson 78mins), Jebb (Murtagh 65mins), Azeez. Subs not used: Hill, Hyde, Wanadio, Wilks.
Hythe: Godman, Smith, Trespaderne, Rogers, Beniot, Wynter (Sarfo 69mins), Webster, Oldaker, Leighton, Collin (Philip 21mins, Walsley 79mins), Brown. Sub not used: Pattinson.
Referee: Oliver Mackey.