Southern League Challenge Cup

Taunton Town 2, Willand Rovers 2 (Taunton win 5-4 on penalties)

TAUNTON Town goalkeeper Lloyd Irish scored the winning penalty as the 10-man Peacocks edged past Willand Rovers on penalties in the Southern League Challenge Cup on Wednesday night.

The hosts fielded a strong side against the mid-Devon outfit, who play a league below Town having been promoted from the Western League last season and featured former Peacocks Douglas Camilo, Craig Veal and Josh Searle in their XI.

It was Douglas who had the first chance, firing wide on six minutes, before Andrew Neal and Saturday's hat-trick hero Dan Sullivan came close for the hosts.

Willand broke the deadlock just after the half-hour mark when Ben Bickle finished off a swift counter-attack and the visitors retained their lead until half-time.

Veal spurned a good chance to double the lead against his old club only to send his shot wide and the situation became more difficult for the hosts when Nick Grimes was sent off for the second time in as many Taunton appearances since joining from Tiverton, again for a professional foul.

The numerical disadvantage did not harm Town to begin with as they turned the game on its head with two goals in seven minutes, Ollie Chamberlain equalising before Ed Palmer's deflected free-kick put the hosts in front.

Taunton entered stoppage time still in front but Willand had the last word in normal time, Luke Mortimore equalising with a fine strike from outside the area to force the tie to penalties.

Sullivan missed Town's first spot kick but two misses from the visitors - including Douglas - put Town in the ascendancy.

Chamberlain hit the bar to keep Willand in it but a miss from Aiden Moyle opened up the opportunity for Irish to finish the game off.

The 'keeper got the better of his opposite number to find the net and send the hosts into the next round.

Taunton are back at home on Saturday, with Swindon Supermarine the visitors (3pm).

Taunton Town: Lloyd Irish, Shane White, Lewis Hall, Josh Grant (Jamie Price 59), Ed Palmer, Nick Grimes, Ollie Chamberlain, Ryan Brett (Jamie Short 45), Dan Sullivan, Zac Smith, Andrew Neal (Matt Wright 59)