The Lady Ks thrashed Sheffield 5-2 at Crown Field on Sunday to make it into the last sixteen for the first time in their history. Naomi Clipston, Kayleigh Sage and a Leanne Lapham penalty put Town three goals up on their Premier League North opponents, though Jodie Michalska pulled two back for Sheffield to put the game on a knife edge. Keynsham rode out the storm, however, Polly Wardle and Ashley Reinecke adding the gloss to the final score, allowing Lapham's miss from her second spot kick to go unpunished.
The cup success will come as welcome respite to Town, who are currently battling relegation from the Premier League South, one half of the third tier of the women's game in England. They currently sit one place above the drop zone on goal difference.
Sunderland have previous in the cup, reaching the final in 2009, and will prove a hefty obstacle for Keynsham's slim quarter-final hopes. Currently, the Black Cats top the Premier League's national division and are revered as the strongest team outside of the top flight Women's Super League, having also claimed the Premier title last term.
The region's only WSL team, Bristol Academy, will also be involved, having been given a bye to the fifth round. The Vixens were also handed a home tie, Leeds United the opposition scheduled to visit the Stoke Gifford Stadium and open Academy's 2012 competitive campaign.
Despite their status as one of the eight semi-professional Super League clubs, progression will be no simple task for the 2011 finalists; Leeds are just three points off Sunderland at the top of the Premier League and have not lost since facing the table toppers in December.
The potential reward for Academy reaching a second consecutive final will not just be the glory of a showpiece national event, as this year's final is being held at Ashton Gate.
Bath based Larkhall Athletic will look on at the draw in envy, as they were unable to repeat their vanquishing of Tottenham in the previous round, falling 3-0 to Brighton & Hove Albion at the Withdean Stadium yesterday. Had they produced another upset against a third tier club, a trip to WSL Chelsea would have been their reward.
All ties are pencilled in to be played on Sunday, March 11th. The full draw is as follows:
Bristol Academy v Leeds United
Barnet v Doncaster Rovers Belles
Charlton Athletic v Blackburn Rovers
Lincoln Ladies v Arsenal
Birmingham City v Liverpool
Manchester City v Everton
Chelsea v Brighton & Hove Albion
Keynsham Town v Sunderland