The First Qualifying Round of the Emirates FA Cup has thrown up some interesting ties.
Two of the ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League sides who caused upsets in the last round both face Evo-Stik League Premier opponents – Boston Town having the bonus of being drawn at home to Hednesford Town, while Step 6 minnows Potton United travel to Dales Lane to take on Rushall Olympic.
Little-known Haughmond, last season`s West Midlands (Regional) League champions who are now playing in the Midland League Premier Division, were rewarded with a home tie with another NPL Premier outfit, Matlock Town.
Another interesting tie sees Basingstoke Town, who are struggling in the Bostik League Premier, host Hampshire neighbours Hartley Wintney, newcomers to the Evo-Stik League South East this season.
Toolstation Northern Counties East League Division One side Grimsby Borough face a tough task by being drawn away to high-flying NPL Premier outfit Warrington Town, while NCEL Premier Division Albion Sports will perhaps be disappointed to have been paired with Barnoldswick Town from the same level of the Hallmark Security League, but at least they are at home.
Altrincham hold the record of knocking out more Football League sides than any other club that has spent its entire history playing in non-League football.
They are now in the NPL Premier Division after suffering relegation from the Vanarama National League North at the end of last season and face a tricky derby from the winners of the all-Hallmark Security League replay between Abbey Hey and Maine Road – but at least Alty fans won`t have far to travel, whoever wins!
Graham Rix`s AFC Portchester from the Sydenhams Football League (Wessex) Premier have been drawn at home to Evo-Stik League South Premier outfit Dorchester Town, so that could well be a headline writers dream!
Step 6 West Midlands (Regional) League minnows Tividale pulled a plumb tie when handed the well-supporters Evo-Stik League South East side AFC Rushden & Diamonds at The Beeches, while Cleethorpes Town and Atherton Collieries, both promoted to the Northern Premier League at the end of last season, were paired together, with the Buildbase FA Vase finalists having home advantage.