Belfast Telegraph

Mixed fortunes for Irish Cup hopefuls in this year's fifth round

By Martin Mawhinney

It was something of a mixed weekend for the non-Premiership teams in the Irish Cup at the weekend.

Those who were favourites, such as Bangor, who won 4-0 against Brantwood, H&W Welders, who won 2-0 at home to Derriaghy CC, or Armagh City, who beat Newtowne 3-0, coasted through.

However, Moyola Park were unlucky to lose 3-2 after leading Glenavon 2-0 at half time, while a gutsy PSNI were beaten 2-1 in extra time against Premiership high-flyers Portadown.

Two years ago, Newington YC set the standard for amateur teams looking to upset the Irish Cup apple cart with their 1-0 win over Glentoran, but this weekend, not only did Newington — in their new role as a Championship club — slide to a humbling 6-0 loss to Crusaders, but the current crop of NAFL sides hoping to follow in their illustrious footsteps also fell to heavy defeats.

Notably, Amateur League Premier Division leaders Ards Rangers lost 6-0 away to Cliftonville and Ballymena United beat fellow Premier Division outfit Crumlin Star 4-0.

Elsewhere, Championship One side Ballyclare Comrades beat Championship Two's Annagh United 3-1, Loughgall slumped to a 5-1 defeat at Institute, and Ards lost 2-0 at Glentoran.

Despite a challenging Championship Two campaign so far, Tobermore United did themselves proud by only losing 2-0 against Linfield, while the all-Championship One derby clash between Larne and Carrick Rangers was abandoned after a head injury to midfielder Scott Irvine. 

The one genuine upset of the weekend was Portstewart's 3-2 win over a Dundela side from the division above them. Their prize for this achievement is a home tie against Premiership title contenders Portadown in the last 16.

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