FA Cup: Five Sussex sides win in first qualifying round - but six go out
There was the expected mixture of joy and agony as 11 Sussex sides went into FA Cup battle on Tuesday night - with three of the ties going to penalty shootouts.
With one all-Sussex tie - Worthing's visit to East Grinstead - the county's teams were involved in 10 first qualifying round ties that offered the winners £2,250 in prize money and a place in the second qualifying round.
That Sussex derby went to penalties after East Grinstead fought back from 3-1 down to draw 3-3 in 90 minutes against their higher-division visitors. But the Wasps won the shootout 4-3 to give Adam Hinshelwood's team an early-season setback.
Another Isthmian premier side to go out were Lewes, beaten 3-1 at Bedfont Sports to complete a miserable first week of the season for the Rooks.
Many eyes were on last season's Cup heroes Chichester City, whose run to the second round, in which they lost at Tranmere, made national headlines. They looked in trouble when their visitors from Bristol went one up but a superb second half fightback, not hindered too much by a red card for Josh Clack shortly after he had put City 2-1, saw Miles Rutherford's men win 3-1.
Horsham beat their Isthmian premier rivals Kingstonian 2-1 at home thanks to a double from new boy Eddie D'Sane, though had to hang on in the face of a strong Ks fightback late on.
Bognor and Hastings are also through - but only after shootout victories. The Rocks were 2-0 down at South Park but battled back to draw 2-2 inside the 90 minutes thanks to goals by Jordy Mongoy and Keaton Wood - then won 4-2 on spot kicks. It was even more dramatic at The Pilot Field where Hastings beat higher-division Chesham 6-5 on spot kicks after a 0-0 draw.
Those going out included SCFL sides Crawley Down Gatwic, Steyning and Little Common, who lost at home to Hendon, Sheppey and Corinthian Casuals respectively.
Also out are Lloyd Cotton's Haywards Heath, who went down 1-0 at home to Hanwell Town.
Bedfont 3 Lewes 1
Chichester City 3 Cribbs 1
Crawley Down Gatwick 1 Hendon 2
East Grinstead 3 Worthing 3 (EG win 4-3 on pens)
Hastings 0 Chesham 0 (Hastings won 6-5 on pens)
Haywards Heath 0 Hanwell 1
Horsham 2 Kingstonian 1
Little Common 0 Corinthian Casuals 3
South Park 2 Bognor 2 (Rocks won 4-2 pens)
Steyning 0 Sheppey 5
* Burgess Hill go to Cray Valley PM on Wednesday night
The second qualifying round - due to take place on October 3 / 4 - will also feature Eastbourne Borough. We'll have news of the draw on this website as soon as it is made.