Frustrated Bluebirds draw with ten-man Dragons

Ben Fawcett opened the scoring for Haverfordwest County


JD Welsh Premier – Phase 2 Playoff Conference


Haverfordwest County 1 – Pontypridd United 1

Haverfordwest County must feel this was two points lost rather than a point gained as they fought for a draw against Pontypridd Town under lights at the Ogi Bridge Meadow Stadium on Friday night.
Man of the match Ben Fawcett gave the Bluebirds the lead, on the half hour mark the visitors were reduced to ten men as Luke Cummings was sent off, but just before the break the Dragons pounced on goalkeeper Zac Jones’ mistake. In the second period the hosts created some decent chances which Dragons’ outstanding keeper George Ratcliffe pulled off some terrific saves to deny the home outfit.
Rhys Abbruzzese’s edge of the area direct free kick sailed over the crossbar, on the half hour mark the Dragons were reduced to ten-men as referee Bryn Markham-Jones issued Luke Cummings with a straight red card following a dangerous two footed tackle on Bluebirds’ Kai Whitmore.
The numerical advantage played in the hands of the hosts when they took the lead with some superb build up play, skipper Ricky Watts found  Martell Taylor-Crossdale, the latter’s well measured through ball fell to the ever alert Fawcett, who confidently struck a first time shot into the far corner of Ratcliffe’s net.
However, it was short lived as Ahmun capitalised on keeper Jones’ howler, the striker’s goal bound shot rebounded off Lee Jenkins on the goal line as it found the back of the net and the score read 1-1 at half time.
Shortly after the break the lively Fawcett forced a good save from Ratcliffe, the striker cut in the from the right before he unleashed a stinging shot that the keeper parried.
The Bluebirds continued to press as minutes later Abbruzzese fed Fawcett on the left, he cut in and struck a low effort which Ratcliffe saved, diving low to his right.
On fire Fawcett crossed into the box, keeper Radcliffe punched clear the danger only to Whitmore, the midfielder struck a vicious edge of the area volley which the keeper turned away for a corner.
Abbruzzese spread the ball wide to the right, substitute Rio Dyer beat his marker before his wicked shot struck the upright, as the Dragons clung on for a point, whilst Tony Pennock’s men must have felt at the final whistle with all the chances they created they should have won it, but it frustratingly wasn’t to be.
Haverfordwest County: Zac Jones, Jazz Richards, Rhys Abbruzzese, Ricky Watts (Captain) (Jacob Owen 72’), Kai Whitmore, Ben Fawcett, Daniel Hawkins, Lee Jenkins, Jack Wilson (Harri John 84’), Corey Shephard, Martell Taylor-Crossdale (Rio Dyer 62’).
Unused substitutes: Ifan Knott, Aidan McNamara, Iori Humphreys, Luke Tabone.
Pontypridd United: George Ratcliffe, Luke Cimmings, Ethan Vaughan, Keston Davies, Ben Williams-Margetson, Ben Ahmun, Jarrad Wright, Owain Jones (Kieran Lewis 62’), Owen Pritchard, Ryan Bevan, Clayton Green (Captain).
Unused substitutes: Ash Morris, Luke Gullick, Ollie Young, Alfie Lewis, Kyle Hancock, Joshua Stephens.
Referee: Bryn Markham-Jones.
Assistants: Johnathon Bebee-Bryant & Jordan Harman.
Fourth Official: Jordan Harman.
Referee Observer: John Davies.