FA Cup: Cray Valley and South Shields knock out National League sides in qualifying

Dagenham, & Redbridge v Hartley Wintney
There was no shock at Dagenham & Redbridge, where the National League club saw off Hartley Wintney 1-0

Eighth-tier Cray Valley Paper Mills came from 2-0 down to stun National League side Maidenhead on a day of FA Cup fourth qualifying round upsets.

Valley are in the first round proper for the first time, a feat matched by South Shields, who shocked another National League side, Halifax Town.

Ninth-tier Skelmersdale are the lowest ranked team left in the competition after beating Stafford Rangers 4-1.

The first round draw takes place live on BBC Two at 19:00 GMT on Monday.

Ties in the first round, when League One and League Two clubs join the competition, will be played across the weekend of Saturday, November 7.

Cup still a great leveller - even in qualifying

Cray Valley may have been fearing the worst when they fell two goals behind inside half an hour at Maidenhead but Ade Yussuf and Connor Dymond drew them level before the break.

Paper Mills keeper Joe Docherty then saved a late penalty before Francis Babalola netted a scarcely-believable stoppage-time winner for the Isthmian League South East side against a club from three divisions higher.

The honour of being the lowest-ranked team in Monday's draw, however, belongs to Skelmersdale, who became the first North West Counties League club to reach the first round since 1997.

Skem - who feature a hero policeman in their ranks and are in their sixth cup game already after beginning their campaign in the extra preliminary round - stormed into a 2-0 lead at Northern Premier outfit Stafford and held off a Rangers rally before sealing their place in the hat with two late goals.

Wealdstone and Weymouth were other National League sides to fall victim to shock - Wealdstone losing 2-0 at home to Hayes & Yeading of the Southern Premier and The Terras going down 3-2 to Oxford City, who reached the first round for the fourth successive year.

Merseyside club Marine FC reached the first round for the first time in 25 years. They won 1-0 at Chester who are two divisions above them.

Meanwhile, fellow eighth-tier side Maldon and Tiptree - who upset Leyton Orient to reach round two last season - beat Haringey Borough 1-0, thanks to Shomari Barnwell's late penalty.

Fans able to enjoy cup magic - well, some were

Nine of Saturday's 28 final qualifying round games were allowed to be played with spectators present because they were played at 'non-elite' grounds (steps 7 or below).

South Shields supporters saw their side make a mockery of the two-division gap between the Mariners and Halifax as the hosts eased to a 2-0 win.

There was no such joy for eighth-tier Ilkeston Town who were thumped 6-0 by Hartlepool United, while another National League side, Barnet, sneaked through 3-2 at Southern Premier side Leiston.

Banbury United, FC United of Manchester and Canvey Island recorded home wins in front of fans while eighth-tier Sholing put on a brave effort for their supporters in losing 2-0 to Torquay United.

There were no supporters at arguably the game of the day as Yeovil beat Dover 7-6 on penalties after a 3-3 draw, while Solihull defeated Wrexham, Chesterfield edged out Stockport on penalties, Bromley won at Sutton United and Woking beat Aldershot in the other all-National League ties.

Two places in the hat remain to be filled as AFC Fylde host Altrincham on Sunday and Bishop's Stortford entertain St Albans City on Monday in the final two qualifying fixtures.

For all of Saturday's fourth qualifying round results, click here.

Around the BBC - SoundsAround the BBC footer - Sounds

Top Stories

The FA Cup