Having won this competition for two seasons in a row and made three consecutive final appearances, Prescot Cables went into their first match of the campaign at home to St Helens Town with much expectation on their shoulders. Only a win would do in a match where a draw would mean penalties.
The game began with a series of chances from both sides, Matthew Hamilton went close with two attempts on goal in the opening ten minutes and James Edgar saw a shot excellently saved four minutes later.
However, it was St Helens who opened the scoring when they got in behind the Cables defence and found a pass to Andrew Presho, his fierce shot beating goalkeeper Kyle Haslam and finding the top corner.
Cables regrouped and looked for a way back into the game but were denied in agonising fashion when Louis Coyne fired wide from six yards.
The home side drew level early in the second half. Cables earned a free kick on the right wing. Valter Fernandes crossed a long ball into the box which met the head of captain Lloyd Dean. He nodded it low to the goalkeepers right and found the back of the net to level the score in the 50th minute.
Cables threatened again two minutes later as Reece Fishwick smashed a long shot off the woodwork and an ambitious effort from Jordan Wynne sailed just wide.
The momentum was stunted in the 66th minute as a match official was injured and a call was made in the ground for any qualified official to make themselves known. Fortunately, a replacement was on hand and the game was shortly resumed with Chris Almond brought on to replace Valter Fernandes.
After a period of back and forth play with no clear chances the game was shaken up by some more substitutions in the 70th minute. Josh Klein-Davies and Michael Monaghan were introduced, replacing goalscorer Lloyd Dean and midfielder Jordan Wynne.
The changes were rewarded in the 83rd minute as a cross from Jordan Southworth into the box caused confusion amongst defenders. After a brief battle for possession, Almond was granted a view of goal and made no mistake when he drove the ball into the roof of the net from short range to book Cables a place in the next round of the competition.
St Helens responded with their own substitution and after shots from Edgar and Klein-Davies threatened to kill the tie, the visitors were galvanised for a new push to equalise when the official indicated that an additional ten minutes would be played at the end of the match.
They nearly got that equaliser in the sixth added minute when Kyle Haslam was forced into making a fantastic save to prevent the game going to penalties.
As the clock ran down, Cables punished the St Helens high line when a huge kick from Haslam’s hands met a run from Klein-Davies in the final third. He brought the ball under control and slotted it low to the goalkeepers left to end the game at 3-1 in the 102nd minute of play.
The attendance was 345 which is fantastic for a midweek cup game. The day’s Roanza Truck and Van Man of the Match was Reece Fishwick who ran himself into the ground and disrupted the St Helens midfield at every opportunity.
Cables will go on to play Bootle away in the next round of the Liverpool Senior Cup but will first take a trip to Warrington on Saturday 27th October before returning to league action at home to Hyde on the 30th October.