Rye snatch win from jaws of defeat

Ben Billings, pictured here against Cove on Saturday, struck twice in Rye United's extra-time victory over Loxwood. Picture by Simon Newstead
Ben Billings, pictured here against Cove on Saturday, struck twice in Rye United's extra-time victory over Loxwood. Picture by Simon Newstead

Rye United came back from the brink of defeat to book their place in the Sussex RUR Charity Cup quarter-finals.

The Quarterboys won 5-2 after extra-time away to Loxwood in round three last night (Tuesday) having equalised in added time at the end of the original 90 minutes.

Eddie French gave Sussex County Football League Division Two high-flyers Loxwood a 35th minute lead, but Ben Billings levelled for mid-table Division One side Rye 15 seconds into the second half.

Joe Holvey restored Loxwood’s advantage on the hour and the hosts looked like doing enough until Evan Archibald kept 2012 winners Rye in the county knockout competition with an equaliser in the second minute of added time.

Billings put Rye 3-2 ahead in the seventh minute of extra-time and substitute Sam Cooper gave them a two-goal cushion six minutes later. Cooper struck again in the 111th minute to put the result beyond doubt, although the final scoreline was cruel on Loxwood.

Rye’s reward is a last eight trip to Horsham YMCA, who edged out fellow Division One high-flyers Hassocks 3-2 in their third round clash last night. See Friday’s Rye Observer for a full report and reaction.