DIVISION Two outfit Chester Nomads are set to lock horns with Division One counterparts Upton AA in the Chester and District FA Senior Cup final.
The showdown is pencilled in for Friday, April 27, at Christleton's Little Heath ground.
Nomads' semi-final against Division Three minnows St Werburgh's on Wednesday was not the foregone conclusion it had first appeared on paper as Saints turned in a spirited performance.
Nomads were made to work for their 2-0 victory, achieved by goals from Chris Suddaby and Tom Sutcliffe.
A defiant Saints rearguard was breached on 15 minutes after Suddaby scored with a dipping shot from the edge of the box. Both sides then enjoyed periods of possession, but following a spate of pressure from Saints, a three-man counter attack from Nomads on 70 minutes produced the decisive second goal as Sutcliffe put the finishing touch to a smart, three-man move.
Upton AA had secured their place in the final last Friday, seeing off Sutton Way Villa 7-2 with goals from Danny Andrews (3), Simon Andrews, Ollie Robinson, Mike Garrod and James Robinson. But two games in two days proved too much to ask of John Cadwallader's men as they lost 2-0 at Castrol in the league on Saturday.
In Wednesday's league action, Helsby took a significant step in their battle to avoid relegation from Division Two by pulling off a fine 3-0 victory at Ashville Reserves. Hero of the hour was two-goal hotshot Gary Cottiga, who struck on 20 minutes and again on the hour. A further goal on 88 minutes from Ryan Cartwright completed an excellent evening's work.
In Division One, it was another typical end-of-season tussle for Division One side Christleton, who fell foul of their bogey side Castrol Social at Little Heath. The issue was settled in Castrol's favour on 40 minutes after Colin Lindsay bagged the game's only goal with a powerful, 15-yard drive.
The Swans had lost 2-1 at Marine Reserves on Saturday. n Blacon YC pulled off the result of the day in Division One on Saturday. A superb 5-0 win at Aintree Villa was confirmed by efforts from Terry Rogan (2), Bill Collins, Simon Jones and Paul Haselden.
In Division Two, Christleton Reserves claimed a 2-1 home win over New Brighton Reserves courtesy of goals from Lennox Beddows and Nick Ashford.
Helsby settled for a share of the spoils in a 1-1 stalemate with runners-up and visitors West Kirby Reserves, while Chester Nomads suffered their third defeat in succession as they were beaten 3-2 by relegated Manweb.
In Division Three, Giuseppi Angelitta scored for St Werburgh's, but Saints were second best once again and went down 3-1 at Ellesmere Port Reserves.
It was a similar tale of woe for Blacon YC Reserves, who crashed 3-0 at home to Willaston Reserves.