Bryntirion Athletic 2-2 Ton Pentre l MacWhirter Welsh League Division One
Wednesday, 11th April 2012 l Bryntirion Park
Ton Pentre notched up their sixteenth draw of the season following their visit to reigning MacWhiter Welsh League Division One champions Bryntirion Athletic. Despite this being a good away point, the Bulldogs will feel that their performance may have warranted victory, as the Rhondda outfit played some sublime football.
This match was a good advert for Welsh League football as both teams were looking to get the ball down and pass their way up the field. Ton Pentre were looking particularly fluid and some of their movement and build-up play was truly magnificent.
Ton Pentre started the game in this vain and within two minutes of the kick-off the Bulldogs had advanced forward to the edge of the Bryntirion 18-yard box. As the ball broke for Ross Fowler, the striker’s immediate reaction was to shoot at goal and his effort beat the goalkeeper low and hard to the left. Fowler is beginning to make a habit of scoring wonder goals.
Five minutes later the Bulldogs were looking dangerous on the prowl around the home team’s box and when Chris Colvin sneaked inside the Bryntirion left-back he opened up space to shoot. However, the striker turned back in onto his right foot before shooting and this narrowed the angle and allowed another defender to close him down, but Colvin was still able to muster a shot on goal that inched over the crossbar.
Bryntirion were able to threaten when on the attack but Jonathan Howe and the Ton Pentre defence were equal to their advances up until the 22nd minute when the home team were awarded a fortunate penalty.
As Geza Hajgato looked to control the ball in the Bulldogs 18-yard box to clear up field, the ball bounced awkwardly and hit his arm as ran on to it. Due to the ball hitting his arm it assisted him in gaining control of the ball leaving the assistant referee, who had a good view of the incident, with no option but to signal for a penalty. There was little protest from Hajgato or his teammates to the decision despite the offence only being committed through misfortune. Bryntirion equalised from the penalty spot and this left the game in the balance right up to half-time.
At the start of the second-half Ton Pentre suffered a blow when Fowler was forced to limp off the pitch after picking up an injury. He was replaced by Richard Jago, who proved to be a nuisance for the Bryntirion defence.
Within moments of his introduction, Jago flicked the ball on for Colvin’s run through the middle of the defence. The frontman unexpectedly beat the defender to the ball and his shot almost caught the keeper out, who saved his strike with natural instinct.
Bryntirion had improved on their first-half performance and in the second were able to apply more pressure on Ton Pentre but were denied by Howe in the 56th minute when he pulled off a good save from a close range effort.
A minute later Ton Pentre thought they’d taken the lead for the second time in the match when Shane Brewer played a superb through ball from deep midfield to release Colvin in attack. Using his pace to run clear of the defence, Colvin had just the advancing keeper to beat. He cheekily chipped the ball over the keeper but there wasn’t quite enough pace on the ball as it bounced towards the goal and a Bryntirion defender was able to get back and stop it right on the goal line before clearing to safety.
The Bulldogs were enjoying a period of creativity and just shy of the hour Leon Young executed a lovely reverse pass that set Jago through into the penalty area. He applied power to his shot but his attempt went wide of the far post.
In the 64th minute of play Bryntirion looked set to take the lead after a free kick from out wide on the right was sent to the back post, where the home team were able to get a free header at goal. Somehow, Bulldogs goalkeeper Howe denied the header from point-blank range with a sturdy block.
It appeared as though Ton Pentre were going to rue their earlier missed chances as in the 73rd minute Ian Turner’s pacey shot from outside the box unexpectedly ended up in the back of the net having appeared to be going wide of Howe’s right post. The Ton Pentre keeper was left planted to spot as he watched the ball pass him before curling and clipping the inside of the post which directed it into the back of the net.
Bryntirion’s lead lasted no longer than five minutes as the tireless Young worked hard to open up another opportunity for the Bulldogs strikers. His well weighted through ball allowed Colvin another opportunity to beat the keeper and on this occasion he did just that by firing the ball hard to ripple the net.
Owen Davies replaced the injured Thomas Davies with five minutes of the match left on the clock. Within moments of his introduction Davies was set-up in the 18-yard box by Colvin. Davies struck a powerful shot at the target but was denied glory by what needed to be a good save from the goalkeeper.
Deep into injury time Bryntirion won a corner and as the ball was sent to the front post the home team thought they were going to score a dramatic winner but Davies was able to clear the ball off the line with the very last kick of the game.
Ton Pentre’s next match is on Tuesday, 17th April 2012 as they welcome Goytre United to Ynys Park. Kick-off is at 7.30pm.
Ton Pentre: 1. Howe, 2. Hajgato, 3. S.Brewer, 4. Lewis (Captain), 5. Porter, 6. T.Davies, 7. Evans, 8. Young, 9. Fowler, 10. Ingram, 11. Colvin. Subs: 12. Jago (for 9 on 47’), 14. Morris, 15. O.Davies (for 6 on 85’).
Goals: Fowler 2’, Colvin 78’
Booked: T.Davies 74’
Referee: Mr A Heathfield