Ton Pentre and Barry Town United don’t do boring football matches. When the teams last met the game ended 4-4 in added time drama and although this latest contest between them didn’t have as many goals, it did have the same level of excitement.
There was a fantastic atmosphere at Ynys Park as both sets of fans roared their teams on and in the first half, the Bulldogs were more than a match for their title-chasing opponents. Lee Phillips’ men were full of confidence following their away win at Goytre United the previous week and were looking hungry for another victory.
By the time the half-time whistle was blown, Ton Pentre were looking good for all three points after the Bulldogs punished Barry Town United when they took their chances as they were presented.
Tom Billing was having his best match for the Rhondda outfit since re-joining Ton Pentre at the start of the season and in the 32nd and 33rd minute he had two excellent attempts to score. His first was following an Adam Lewis cross that was headed just wide and the second powerful effort was tipped over the crossbar by Dan Bradley.
Billing made no mistake with his next opportunity as he headed the Bulldogs into a 1-0 lead during the 41st minute of play. His lovely header was expertly directed past Bradley and into the net.
Ton Pentre continued to apply pressure on the Barry Town defence and after several shots were denied by the woodwork and blocks within the six-yard box by defenders, Aaron Jewell fired through the crowd making it 2-0 in the 44th minute.
During the early stages of the second half, Ton Pentre were looking reasonably comfortable, however, Barry Town began to ramp up the pressure and striker James Dixon was becoming a handful.
Barry got the breakthrough that they’d been searching for in the 65th minute when Drew Fahiya sneaked through the Bulldogs defence to make it 2-1.
With just four minutes left on the clock, Dixon had managed to get around the back of the defence with Liam Hutchinson in pursuit. As Dixon looked set to shoot, Hutchinson appeared to trip the striker, resulting in a red card for the Bulldogs defender and a penalty kick.
Michael Hartley stepped up to take the penalty kick and sent Jarrad Howells the wrong way.
With little time left on the clock, Barry Town tried to make their one-man advantage count but Ton Pentre did enough to protect their point.
It was another action-packed encounter between these two famous football clubs with a point taking the Bulldogs up to seventh while Barry Town went top of the table.
Ton Pentre’s next match is the Rhondda Derby at Cambrian & Clydach Vale on Saturday, 26 March. This big game kicks off at 2.30pm.