Rachel is spot-kick hero as Chorley FC Women KO Belles

Rachel Darbyshire saves in the shoot-out
Rachel Darbyshire saves in the shoot-out

Keeper Rachel Darbyshire was Chorley FC Women’s hero as they knocked out Doncaster Rovers Belles in the FA Women’s National League Cup.

Chorley did it the hard way, battling to a 2-2 draw in South Yorkshire, before three spot-kick saves from Darbyshire settled the outcome of this preliminary-round tie against last season’s WSL 2 Champions.

Chorley's Laura Walker scores from the spot to make it 1-0

Chorley's Laura Walker scores from the spot to make it 1-0

The Magpies started on the front foot, and the first chance of the game fell to Scarlett Smith, but her header from a Rachael Wood cross was collected by Emily Batty.

Chorley were dominating the physical battle in midfield and this was the key to the first goal.

Grace Vella and Laura Walker used their strength to win possession, before the latter slotted the ball through to Mel Ball.

She sprinted past the full-back, only to be brought down in the area. Walker remained calm and dispatched the penalty into the top left-hand corner.

Doncaster started to get into the game, looking dangerous at set-pieces and after half-an-hour, they equalised.

Darbyshire had tipped a powerful drive around her near post, but from the corner, Izzy Whittle planted home a header.

Wood twice went close at the start of the second half, before Chorley regained the lead on the hour.

Rebecca Kemp dribbled her way past two players before catching Batty out with a near-post shot.

But as the match entered injury time, a scramble in the box saw Whittle stab home for her second.

After extra time the scores were still level, so the game went to a shoot-out, Darbyshire saving three times as Chorley went through 4-3 on penalties.