Chorley 2 Doncaster Rovers 2: Magpies close to pulling off FA Cup upset
Chorley came close to causing an FA Cup upset, but eventually had to settle for a 2-2 draw against Doncaster Rovers at Victory Park.
The Magpies led 2-1 thanks to first-half goals from Josh O'Keefe and Courtney Meppen-Walter, but James Coppinger saved the League One outfit's blushes 12 minutes from time with a brilliant equaliser.
The hosts were well worthy of being in front at the break, but they came under intense pressure in the second half, especially after Matt Challoner was red carded on the hour-mark for serious foul play.
However,although they could not hold on to their lead, they will head to the Keepmoat Stadium for a replay in just over a week's time.
The Magpies got off to the best possible start when they won a corner in the opening minute after O'Keefe's shot was deflected.
Adam Blakeman's centre from the left was met at the back post by O'Keefe who powered his header home.
Chorley were certainly snapping into the tackles in the opening few minutes in front of a raucous atmosphere at Victory Park.
Doncaster began to get a foothold in the game and they equalised in the 11th minute.
Home goalkeeper Matty Urwin produced a terrific point-blank save to deny John Marquis, but Herbie Kane was on hand to slot home.
Rovers looked dangerous going forward, but Marcus Carver almost put the hosts back in front in the 17th minute.
The striker latched onto Elliot Newby's pass but his first time shot with his left foot was pushed on to the near post and out for a corner by Ian Lawlor in the Doncaster goal.
A minute later Meppen-Walter headed straight at Lawlor at the back post after Andy Teague's centre from the right.
Rovers thought they had gone ahead in the 27th minute but Matty Blair's shot was brilliantly cleared off the line by Scott Leather.
Mallik Wilks should have given the League One outfit the lead in the 41st minute when raced clear on goal but his shot was deflected on to the post by Urwin and Teague cleared the danger.
The visitors were made to pay for that profligacy when the Magpies re-took the lead.
A brilliant flick by Elliot Newby released Jake Cottrell, on as a substitute for O'Keeke, down the left. His centre was headed back across goal by Teague where it fell to Meppen-Walter, who nonchalantly steered the ball home in off the post with the outside of his left-foot.
While Chorley probably deserved their lead in the first half, they certainly came under the cosh in the second period against their full-time opponents.
Alfie May somehow failed to apply the finishing touch in the 52nd minute after Danny Andrew's cross from the left.
And the hosts cause was certainly not helped when Matt Challoner was sent-off for a dangerous foul on Coppinger.
With a numerical advantage, Doncaster piled forward in search of an equaliser.
Urwin produced an unbelievable double save in the 71st minute to thwart Coppinger and then Wilks before Andrew fired the rebound across goal.
The Chorley No.1 could do nothing about Doncaster's equaliser as Coppinger curled an absolute worldy into the top corner.
A minute later, Marquis goal bound effort was blocked by Leather.
There was still time for Chorley to go for the winner and Blakeman's terrific free-kick was tipped over the bar by Lawlor.
Rovers had the last big chance in the last minute when May fired wide of the post from inside the area.