Football: FA Cup - Giants wounded, if not yet killed

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Ilkeston Town of the Dr Martens Midlands Division, Basingstoke Town from the Ryman Premier Division, the GM Vauxhall Conference champions, Stevenage Borough, and Hereford United were the toast of the FA Cup second round by, if not exactly killing Nationwide giants, then severely wounding them and forcing replays back at non-league grounds after they all drew 1-1 away.

Did the stationers Ryman have a feeling that several Isthmian League clubs were going to have profile-raising FA Cup runs this season when they stepped in with their sponsorship deal just before the first round? Basingstoke supported the strategy when railway guard Alan Carey scored a 75th-minute equaliser at Second Division Northampton Town's Sixfields Stadium to produce the result of the round. The replay, on 16 December, will be Basingstoke's 11th FA Cup game this season.

Ilkeston led 1-0 at Scunthorpe United through Ian Robinson's close-range header in the 52nd minute; Jamie Forrester's late leveller gave the Third Division side a second bite.

Stevenage, reduced to 10 men after Ryan Kirby was dismissed with half an hour remaining against Third Division Cambridge United at the Abbey Stadium, led through Gary Crawshaw's 17th-minute penalty until seven minutes from the end when Martin Butler equalised. There will be a full house at Broadhall Way on Monday, 15 December.

Demoted to the Conference in May, Hereford had a small measure of revenge when they eliminated Brighton, whose last-match win dumped them out of the league, in the first round and yesterday went to Layer Road and held Colchester United having fallen behind after 10 minutes to David Gregory's strike. Neil Grayson's second-half goal ensured a tricky night for the Essex side at Edgar Road.

Boreham Wood, from the Ryman Premier, drew 1-1 at Cheltenham Town, one of the pacemakers of this year's Vauxhall Conference, in the only match which was sure to see a non-league side progress. Shaun Marshall, who scored the goal that beat Hayes in the previous round, scored again after 13 minutes but Lee Howells gave the Conference side another chance.

Leading the Ryman Premier by several quires, Dagenham & Redbridge gave Third Division Peterborough United a tough game and led 2-1 with 19 minutes remaining, but the experienced Jimmy Quinn scored twice as Posh progressed 3-2.

The Ryman Premier side Hendon, who knocked out Leyton Orient in the previous round, lost 3-1 at Cardiff while Wisbech lost 2-0 at home to Bristol Rovers.

Drawing 0-0 at Rotherham at half-time, King's Lynn of the Dr Martens Premier collapsed to lose 6-0; not quite as bad as Third Division Macclesfield, who replaced Hereford, beaten 7-0 at home by Walsall of the Second.

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