With five of their normal starting 11 missing, Ross Juniors men made the away trip to higher division Redbrook Rovers in the group stages of the George Sandoe Cup, knowing this would be a bench mark for next season should they get promoted.

Ross started well but were hit by a counter attack and found themselves 1-0 down against the run of play.

This didn’t affect Ross who kept playing the better football and won themselves a free-kick 20 yards out, which Ben Scotford stepped up and scored from with a sweet strike.

Juniors then went further ahead when some lovely football found Florin Crainic who drove into the box only to be illegally brought down.

With regular penalty taker Callum Trotman missing, up stepped Carl Roberts who put an emphatic strike into the top corner to make it 2-1.

Redbrook then had a corner which was headed clear only to find it land at the feet of their midfielder who hit a great strike from 30 yards out which found the back of the Ross net for 2-2 at half-time.

The visitors started the stronger again after the break only to have that work undone with the sending off of a Ross player with 35 minutes still to play.

Ross dug in deep and worked tirelessly to keep the game tight but just couldn’t find that one chance needed to win the game, with honours even at the final whistle.

Meanwhile, Newent Town bounced back from a 7-0 drubbing to Hartpury University the previous week with an epic 3-2 home win over top-six side Clanfield 85 on Saturday, after 14 minutes of injury time.

The Daffs trailed 1-0 at the break, but fought back to secure a vital three points to give them a 14-point cushion to the dropzone.

The Hellenic League One match was also notable for the visit of groundhopper Tony Incenzo, who is now only eight more trips away from reaching his 2,500 ground target.

But the Daffs Development team were hit for six without reply by high-flying hosts Meadow Park in Hellenic Two West and remain pointless.

Ruardean Hill Rangers travelled to play Cribbs 2nds in midweek in the Gloucestershire County League, but went 1-0 down when a cross from the left was stabbed in from close range by Andy Forward on 31 minutes.

Despite having a number of set pieces towards the end, the visitors couldn’t get back on terms and lost out by the single goal.

But Rangers 2nds won 4-0 at home to Milkwall in the group stages of the JO Roberts Cup on Saturday,

and Lydbrook Athletic went one better beating visitors Howle Hill 5-0 in the same competition.

Huntley also trailed 3-1 at half-time to hosts Whitecroft 2nds, but fought back to draw 3-3, Will Freeman, Callum Love and Marc Matthews the marksmen.

Two goals from Dwane Morris and one from Jamie Baker secured a 3-0 home win for Longhope over Ruardean Hill A in the George Sandoe Cup, and Lydbrook 2nds also enjoyed home comforts with a 2-0 win over Viney St Swithins 2nds.

But Athletic’s A strong went down 3-0 away to Mitcheldean 2nds in the FJ Pope Cup, the same reverse for Ruardean United at home to Ellwood 2nds.

Fixtures this Saturday (February 25) include – Ross Juniors v Tidenham, Newent Town v Malmesbury Victoria, Malvern Town Dev v Newent Town Dev, Ruardean Hill Rangers v Gala Wilton, Ellwood v Ruardean Hill Rangers 2nds, Harrow Hill 2nds v Lydbrook Athletic, Huntley v Bream Amateurs, Milkwall v Howle Hill, Lydbrook Athletic 2nds v Lydney Town B, Ruardean Hill Rangers A v Soudley 2nds, Viney St Swithins 2nds v Longhope, Ruardean United v Ellwood 2nds, Sling v Mitcheldean 2nds, Redbrook Rovers 2nds v Lydbrook Athletic A.