FA CUP QUARTER-FINAL: Bristol Rovers 1 West Bromwich Albion 5
There was no upset here as West Bromwich Albion lived up to their billing as favourites and returned a semblance of normality to a weekend which saw underdogs prosper in the FA Cup quarter-finals.
While the scoreline is undoubtedly harsh on Coca-Cola League One club Bristol Rovers, who gave a good account of themselves in the first half, wearying legs, Lady Luck and some sharper Albion minds eventually took their toll and put paid to any hopes of a semi-final Wembley appearance for the Pirates.
Instead, that honour will go to Albion for the first time since 1982 and, with Manchester United, Chelsea and Middlesbrough out of the equation, Tony Mowbray's side will rightly fancy their chances against whoever has the misfortune to play them.
On this form, they will take some beating. Forget the Memorial Ground pitch - which was poor but did not play atrociously - Albion's professionalism meant it did not become a leveller.
Such was the desire and intent of both sides that an open, end-to-end and enthralling first half ensued; for all the energy, it was not short on enterprise and decent football, either.
Albion looked vulnerable when the home side attacked with pace and directness, which they did a lot. Make no mistake, the Pirates showed promise but, in contrast, looked desperately suspect at the back.
James Morrison smashed home Albion's first on 17 minutes after following up a saved shot from Roman Bednar, who had been beautifully released by Robert Koren.
However, if Albion's 2,000 travelling supporters thought that would be enough to dampen Rovers' spirits, they were very much mistaken and, had it not been for the athleticism of Dean Kiely in goal, the scores would have been level minutes later.
A long, direct free kick was nodded down by the impressive Rickie Lambert - who scored a hat-trick against Albion in a pre-season friendly - to around the six yard box and striker Andy Williams was first to pounce but he saw his decent connection palmed aside by Kiely.
The duo combined five minutes later and Lambert scuffed his shot straight at Kiely when he should have done much better.
The Pirates' back four were physically inferior to Albion's strikers and looked significantly cumbersome, especially when trying to cope with the galloping runs of Miller. His 30th-minute goal, Albion's second, was a case in point.
A long ball from Robert Koren into the inside left channel was run down by Miller, who left Joe Jacobson in his wake. He then cut inside him and powered his shot past Steve Phillips from the edge of the box.
It looked to be 'game over' at that stage but, as with the first goal, the adversity only inspired Rovers to attack more and they were rewarded two minutes later when they got back in the game.
For all the promise of the Pirates' strikers, it was left to centre-back Danny Coles to get Rovers back in the game when he slotted home a knockdown from a Stuart Campbell corner on 32 minutes.
The same insatiable tempo continued until the end of the first half. Campbell saw his curling 25-yard effort narrowly miss the stanchion before Miller, put clean through by
Bednar, seemed to be felled by Phillips in the Rovers goal after rounding him, Referee Mark Clattenburg ruled that he had slipped which meant a reprieve for Phillips, who would have surely gone to the dressing room had it been adjudged the other way, as well as for Rovers, for whom a 3-1 deficit at the break would have been heartbreaking and unassailable.
Miller should have made it 3-1 seven minutes into the second half, which had picked up where the first had left off when he was fed through by Koren after some neat Albion build-up play. His finish, if that is what is can be called, was abysmal.
Zoltan Gera and Kevin Phillips came on just past the hour for Chris Brunt and Bednar and with their creative and predatory instincts, must have been licking their lips at entering such an open game. It was a free-for-all: Albion should have been out of sight - but they weren't.
There was no shortage of controversy throughout, as one would expect from such a tie, with Miller's second goal no exception.
Martin Albrechtsen's routine clearance header was flicked backwards by Craig Hinton, which duly played the back-tracking striker onside. Once more, he found himself in the familiar position of bearing down on goal and this time he made no mistake.
Phillips then put the game safe on 73 minutes. More good work from Koren, this time on the right, found Miller, whose deft flick found its way into the path of Phillips to volley past his namesake.
Lewis Haldane hit Kiely's post with a speculative effort from distance but, for the last ten minutes, Albion were in complete control.
Miller finished off his hat-trick with five minutes to go after steering home a low cross from Gera, which somehow found its way to the penalty spot.
It was Albion's 13th goal in their last three away FA Cup ties. They are away again in the next round - at Wembley.
Scorers: Morrison (17) 0-1; Miller (30) 0-2; Coles (32) 1-2, Miller (68) 1-3; Phillips (73) 1-4; Miller (85) 1-5.
BRISTOL ROVERS (4-4-2) Phillips; Lescott, Hinton, Coles, Jacobson; Pipe (Walker 72), Campbell, Disley, Lines (Hal-dane 55); Williams (Igoe 82), Lambert. Subs: Green, Anthony.
WEST BROMWICH ALBION (4-42): Kiely; Hodgkiss, Barnett, Albrechtsen, Robinson; Morrison, Koren, Greening, Brunt (Gera 63); Bednar (Phillips 63), Miller (De-Heon 84). Subs: Danek, Pele.
Referee: Mark Clattenburg (Tyne and Wear).