THIS match had started well for Skelmersdale who were facing a strengthening wind.
Shaun Tuck had a smart effort saved by Town goalkeeper Jack Cudworth, and then in the 14th minute they took the lead. Tuck ran onto a finely placed ball down the left and crossed deep to the far post, Dean Astbury was too quick for his marker and put a diving header into Cudworth’s net.
Sadly, though it took only four minutes to give the advantage away. An innocuous back-pass to goalkeeper Ryan McMahon facing the wind hesitated and his kick went straight to Steve Foster, he squared the ball across goal leaving Ben Deegan with the simplest of tap-ins.
However, the goal gave Nantwich confidence and they won a free-kick on the left just after the half-hour. The ball was floated high into the box; Adam Jones got up above everyone and aimed a dropping header into the far corner of the net.
In the last 15 minutes Skelmersdale started to make some inroads, mostly because of a tactical change by Tommy Lawson that reduced his defence to three men.
Five minutes added time was signalled, but even then a miracle was required. It happened bang on four and a half minutes into the extra-time. Morning cut in from the left, desperately looking for an opening to shoot and carried the ball across the edge of the penalty area and he was tripped on the edge of the “D”. Tommy Lawson was screaming for Laird to take the free-kick, the message got through, Laird hammered the ball around Nantwich’s six man defensive wall and it billowed into the net behind Cudworth.
l NANTWICH TOWN: Cudworth, Frost ©, White, Jones M., Courtney, Jones A. (Davis, 83), Clayton, Devenney, Deegan, Foster, Abadaki (Gardner, 90) Subs (not used) Burns, Wain, Hood
l SKELMERSDALE UNITED: McMahon, Wylie, Peet, Hardwick ©, Burton, Strickland, Hughes, Flood (Morning, 45), Astbury (Laird, 74), Tuck (O’Reilly, 81), Ince
Referee: Helen Byrne Attendance: 303