Lichfield City FC’s hopes of continuing their FA Cup dream were dashed as they were beaten by Nuneaton Borough.
The eyes of the nation were on the game after it was chosen for live coverage on the BBC – but that didn’t stop a crowd of more than 800 packing into the Trade Tyre Community Stadium.
City went into the game as underdogs and had to be alert in the opening stages to prevent the visitors from taking the lead as keeper James Beeson was called into early action.
But Lichfield began to grow into the tie with Max Dixon’s neat turn and shot well saved.
Dixon might feel he should have done better with his next chance when he was sent through by Kyle Patterson but lashed a strike over the bar.
The bumper crowd and those watching on TV were being treated to an end to end encounter as Beeson was again called into action to turn a shot round his post.
The second half saw Beeson deny Nuneaton once more with a smart double save, before Dixon’s 30 yard strike went just over.
Dan Lomas tested the visiting keeper with a powerful drive that was parried away as both sides continued to slug it out in search of the opening goal.
But it was Nuneaton who would make the crucial breakthrough when Ryan Edmunds fired a fabulous strike beyond Beeson.
Lichfield’s task looked to be beyond them when Louis Baker matched his team-mate with another top drawer finish to make it 2-0.
But the home side continued to play their part in an entertaining encounter as Dixon was again denied by keeper Tony Breeden.
City were thrown a lifeline when Christian Blanchette was fouled in the box and Max Black stepped up to convert the penalty and half the deficit.
Any hope of a dramatic comeback in the final minutes were dashed though when Jordan Goddard netted to make it 3-1 to Nuneaton.