CDP Ton Pentre AFC


Fixtures and Results 2001/2002

March 26th: Ton Pentre 1 v Fields Park Pontllanfraith 0

Ton Pentre had to make more changes in their line up due to injuries to Lee Brown, Dai Withers and Nathan Prygodzicz. So in came Carl Thomas and Lee Randall, the latter making his home debut. The game was played on a decent surface and with both sides wanting the points, Ton to maintain their push for the League title and Fields Park for their fight to get away from the bottom.

Fields Park kicked off and went straight on the attack. The response from Ton was immediate, when a long ball from Jason Roberts found Rob King on the shoulder of the away defence, he shot into the side netting. When the game settled it was the usual sort of game we have now come to expect, the away side playing the long high ball and Ton trying to play the ball through midfield and wingbacks. However, Ton were guilty of giving the ball away and there was very little movement in the midfield. This made the game easier for Fields Park, they were able to keep Ton on the defence.

The 7th minute saw Carl Thomas hit a shot just over the crossbar. A couple of minutes later Ton had a free kick in a very advantageous position, near the goal line and 10 yards from the touchline, Ceri Harding put the ball over where Fields Park's Williams cleared it for a corner, this resulted in Ton winning another, where Harding played the ball into the box, too close to the keeper. This allowed him to clear up field, for Cooper to attack the home defence. The clearance resulted in a throw on he Fields Park left, Turner threw the ball long, Dean Morris cleared off the line; the ball then fell to Richards on the edge of the box, he fired his shot over the top.

Ton were again guilty in the first 20 minute of losing the ball and looking for the difficult ball, when patience was required. It was the 21st minute where Ton made the breakthrough, Marty Ellacott played the ball to Morris, who passed to Lee Randall on the right, he held the ball up and put over a superb cross from the dead ball line, Carl Thomas was there to head the ball home. 1-0 to Ton. Randall did very well to dig the ball out and get the cross over, it was a pleasure to see the ball played back from the goal line.

Fields Park were not letting Ton have their own way, they were chasing and not giving Ton any time on the ball and in the 23rd minute a free kick was played into the Ton area by Jones, where Ton were able to scramble the ball clear, it was desperate defending. The period up to the 35th minute saw the Ton side losing the ball and Fields Park winning a number of free kicks and corners, although Ton were not really troubled, Neil Davies, Mike Jones and Roberts were having to work hard.

The wingbacks of Ton were also both pushing on when defensive work was required. When Ton did get free kick they were played in by Harding, the away number 5 Williams was able to head clear. Ton did keep Fields Park in their third when a free kick resulted in two corners being won, with the last corner Mike Jones headed just wide, with Williams doing all he could to prevent a clear head on goal.

In the 41st Fields Park had a corner on their left, Chris Jones put the ball under the cross bar, Ellacott did well to punch clear with 3 opposing players around him. A minute later Williams had another headed attempt go just wide of the upright. Lee Tapper was trying to get in behind the away defence; however, he was unable to make his crosses count. The first half fizzled out with Ton leading 1-0. The referee having played 3 minutes of stoppage time.

The start of the second half saw Ton win a corner straight from the kick off, Harding played it in, the away keeper Delve miss-judged it and it went behind for a goal kick. The opening 8 minutes of the second half saw the home side keep the opposition in their half, without troubling Delve in goal. Thomas did make one break and turn, his shot went wide of the left upright. The 55th minute saw Cooper make a break and his shot from 25 yards went wide, again this was another break which could have resulted in a goal.

The game was now becoming very poor with Ton losing their way and Fields Park trying their best to get a goal, which would get them into the game. Ton were getting into the final third and were not able to turn the possession into anything of use. Again Fields Park broke up the play and put Cooper through, he shot over form 20 yards. The 65th minute saw Harding put a ball onto the edge of the six-yard area, where Randall tried to get the ball, his touch put the ball just over. It was another good effort by Randall.

The game was now all stop start with the Ton faithful starting to get frustrated with the performance, knowing the team should be playing a lot better than this. In the 68th Fields Park had a shot cleared by Roberts off the line. Then a cross form Harding was cleared by Williams, the ball fell to King who played it to Thomas, he took the ball on the volley, it was a good effort that went over.

The first Ton change was in the 70th, Lee Mathews replaced King. The 72nd minute saw another scare for the home defence, Bowden of Fields Park got in behind the Ton defence, he put a low driving cross over, fortunately for the home side it went behind the onrushing forwards. As the game continued it was deteriorating, with Ton unable to put 3 passes together. The second change for Ton was in the 80th. Ian Shepherd replaced Lee Randall.

The remainder of the half saw Ton win a number of kicks, which were played in by Harding, there was no penetration and Delve in goal was able to collect them with ease. In the final minutes of the game Fields Park forced a couple of corners, again they were unable to put any pressure on Ellacott in the home goal. The last attack saw Ton going forward through Mathews and Shepherd, they combined well and were able to take the game to Fields Park. The referee again played 3 minutes of stoppage time.

This was not a pretty game, however Ton got the 3 points that was needed, it is said that when a team gets the points when playing badly it is a good sign. So with the games coming up fast and furious Ton will need to dig deep into their squad and get through the next 10 days, with 4 games in 8 days it is going to be tough. On the 30th away to Cardiff Corries, home on the 1st to Milford, away on the 3rd to Ponterdawe (one that the home side would not re-arrange before the Welsh Cup Semi) and then Barry Town on the 6th in the Welsh Cup semi-final at Llanelli 1:30 kick off.

Teams Ton Pentre: Ellacott, Tapper, Davies, Mike Jones, Roberts, Hughes, King, Morris, Thomas, Randall & Harding, substitutes Mathews, Shepherd & Nicky Jones.

Fields Park: Andrew Delve, Bowden, Richards, Anthony Reynolds, Williams, Hatton, Cridland, Paul Jenkins, Cooper, Jones & Turner Substitutes Jeff Reynolds, Steve Jenkins & Peter Delve.

Written by Gary Matuszczyk


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