A DING-dong battle saw HUCKNALL ROLLS LEISURE suffer an agonising 4-3 exit, after extra time, at the hands of Sandhurst in the First Round of the Notts Senior League, Senior Cup.
Rolls initially paid the price for a poor start and found themselves 2-0 down at the break to goals from Cliff Clarke and Adam Bradford.
This was despite golden chances before the whistle for Rory Smith, who headed over from six yards, and Matt Rick, who shot wide when clean through.
The locals could have gone further behind in the first minute of the second half as Clarke hit the post.
But this finally seemed to wake the Rollers and a change of shape in the 55th minute changed the balance of power.
A lifeline was grabbed when Rick headed home on 70 minutes after a corner from Chay Betteridge.
Wave after wave of attacks followes and the duly grabbed a deserved leveller eight minutes from time when Betteridge’s strike was parried into the path of Rick, who volleyed home with aplomb.
But all the good work was undone in the early stages of extra time by a double blow for Rolls. Firstly an injury to Rick reduced them to ten man as they had used all their substitutes.
Then, while shuffling their pack, the referee’s assistant failed to spot an offside and Bradford went on to score.
With Rolls chasing the game, the visitors secured their passage as Clarke netted the killer goal.
To their credit, Rolls continued to battle and pulled back a consolation through substitute Andy Start after a goalmouth scramble.