THE Joe Lynam Trophy pitched together first division side RAINBOW INTERNATIONAL and GLADIATORS who are languishing near the foot of Division Three; the home team no doubt anticipating a comfortable passage into the next round.
Football is anything but predictable though, and the minnows were gifted an opening goal when home custodian Daniel Scothern allowed a harmless-looking Gav Clarke free kick to slip through his hands.
Glen Clarence showed up well as Rainbow hit back; then blasting home a penalty kick following an unnecessary push by the visiting goalkeeper.
Clarence was also instrumental in full-back John Biddle giving Rainbow the advantage following a goal area scramble, only for Kevin Marchant to deflect an effort that wrong-footed Scothern to level things up at the break.
The introduction of Jordan Sisson provided Rainbow with a bit more composure and they asserted in the second period to secure a three goal advantage, only to toss away the lead as the plucky visitors fought back.
In fact, at 5-5 they were denied by a breath-taking Scothern save, and spurned a gilt-edged chance that might have won the tie when a team mate chose to toe poke a goal bound shot from Simon Bridges over the line when in an off-side position.
They were to regret this lapse of concentration when Ross Keightley scored his second goal of the game in the very last minute to take a relieved Rainbow through to the next round.
Clarence got a second goal and Liam Hood the other, whilst the unfortunate Bridges notched a hat-trick for the opposition and could count himself unfortunate to be on the losing side.
Jamie Briggs scored a goal in each half for RAILWAY INN in an otherwise unmemorable match played in difficult conditions that saw his side to a 2-0 victory over RAILWAY TAVERN.
The day’s highest scorer was Adam Hassall who got five for RIPLEY WHITE LION as they swept aside HILCOTE MW 8-1. Ben Sulley, Adam Bond and Mark Gotheridge were the other marksmen.
AFC SOUTH NORMANTON took the lead in their tie at HAYLOFT and goal scorer Nathan Comrey went on to get a hat-trick, only to end up on the losing side. Anthony Rowley matched him goal for goal to include a penalty kick, and two more from Matt Byard and a Lewis Allsop free kick gave Hayloft a 6-3 win.
Daniel Harris scored twice but his goals proved to be in vain as ALLIANCE HEALTHCARE were beaten 2-5 at the hands of BULLS HEAD for whom Nick Wilson grabbed a hat-trick; other goals being scored by Daniel Prince and Matt Henson.
CODNOR MINERS ARMS had a potential banana skin to overcome as they travelled to meet HOLMEWOOD MW, however they illustrated their recent improvement to secure a 4-1 victory margin.
In the only other game to survive the rains that fell throughout the night and match day, AMBER ATHLETIC eased passed GALLOWS INN 4-2. Adam Thomas (2), Matt Vincent and Aaron Wood got their goals with Lee Hillier responding with both for the visitors.
Fixtures for Sunday, March 11
Cup - Derby Athletic v Shirland MW; Out of Town v Boundary Athletic.
Division One - AFC South Normanton v Marlpool White Lion; Crib v Jacksdale.
Division Two - Railway Inn v Holmewood MW; Ripley White Lion v Hayloft; The Wheel v Amber Athletic.
Division Three - Gladiators v Heanor Staffs; Seven Stars v Hilcote MW.