Ever since the day they were involved in a 21-penalty shoot-out with New Marske, North Shields have been wary of deciding cup ties by this method!

And last Saturday's Sunderland Shipowners' Cup tie with Wolviston was no exception. Three times the Robins were behind before forcing the game into a penalty decider and on this occasion it took only eight kicks before they celebrated.

"I don't think we will ever forget the game at New Marske when we won 11-10 in a Monkwearmouth Charity Cup match. It was unbearable to watch and since then we have naturally been apprehensive so it was nice to get the result against Wolviston especially as they led three times," declared Robins secretary David Thompson.

In fact, it took a spot kick in extra time to set up the penalty shoot-out.

David Little, Stephen Hamil and Roy Gordon converted the first three kicks and Wolviston's players were also successful at this stage.

Eddie Miller then made it 4-3 in North Shields' favour before David Lanning raised the hopes of the home supporters when he saved from David Dowd.

All the pressure was then on Paul Blakey, who had been introduced as a substitute in the 119th minute and much to the joy of the Robins and the dismay of Wolviston he converted his kick.

"It was really an astute move by our manager Wilf Keilty, who obviously had confidence in Paul taking a penalty. He only introduced him with a minute of extra time remaining when it looked certain that penalties would be needed to settle the tie and Paul came up trumps when a lot depended on him," added Thompson.

North Shields are away to Birtley Town in the next round while Stokesley SC will have home advantage over Windscale if they see off Whitehaven. The match was called off last week when the Whitehaven ground was waterlogged.

Windscale went through defeating Ferryhill Athletic who fought gallantly after conceding two goals in the first 10 minutes. Manager Mark Fanning is convinced that more performances like the one shown at Windscale will see his side move off the bottom of the table.

Currently, they are only a couple of points adrift of Washington Nissan UK and have a game in hand on their rivals.

Barnard Castle Glaxo manager John Hall meanwhile enthused at his side's near double-figure victory at Nissan last week. Glaxo rifled nine goals and after struggling early on, they are gradually making progress up the table.

Saturday's results: League: Annfield Plain 2, Ryhope CW 2; Boldon CA 1, Jarrow 1; Gateshead Reserves 1, Harton and Westoe 0; Washington Nissan UK 3, Barnard Castle Glaxo 9; New Marske v Cleadon SC postponed.

Sunderland Shipowners' Cup second round: Birtley Town 4, Darlington RA 1; North Shields 3, Wolviston 3 (aet), North Shields won 5-3 on penalties; Windscale 2, Ferryhill Athletic 0; Whitehaven v Stokesley SC - postponed.