25 Oct Match Reports – 24th Oct
Bridgend Mens 1st XI 3 v 1 Bristol Uni
The Ravens travelled to Bristol on a muggy Saturday morning. They encountered their second university team of the year with a depleted squad, however that has never stopped the mighty Bridgend who rose to the occasion. The game started without Bristol having any look in. Bridgend pushed forwards and only the opposition keeper prevented an early lead. Bridgend were first to put the ball in the goal, however Jack “the Yak” Joplin struck a foot with a superb stike, which was finished off by Andrew Jones Snr, however the umpire was quick on his whistle and a short corner as awarded prior to the net rippling. Although this short corner was not converted, the next was a different story, James Griffiths accurate and speedy injection was perfectly laid up by Jack “Emmerdale” Joslin for David Knight to slip in Andrew Jones Snr who’s inch perfect pass allowed Rhys Owen to tap the ball in at the far post. After the restart Andrew Jones Snr quickly regained possession playing in James Griffiths who made no mistake about drilling the ball past the keepers, within a minute of the previous. The rest of the half was spent between Paul Jones and Andrew Jones Jr cutting the defence apart, however no further goals were forthcoming.
The second half saw Bridgend keeping possession which allowed very little option for Bristol. James Griffiths manufactured a tap in for David Knight after taking the keeper out of the game. Bristol did score a consolation goal goal as Bridgend tired, but that was enough to ensure Bridgend’s defence bucked up their ideas and remained staunch for the rest of the game. Expertly timed tackles from Rob Evans and Jamie Brooks kept the Bristol attack frustrated. The Ravens ensured they have maintained their unbeaten run. Looking forwards to the same next week.
Bridgend Mens 2nd XI 4 v Brecon 3
Bridgend 2nds welcomed Brecon to the Pencoed fortress knowing a win was a must. However a number of enforced changes made the task a difficult one. Bridgend handed second team debuts to youngsters Matthew Hibbert and Rhys Rubery with both making the step up with ease. Bridgend found themselves 1-0 down at half time but the score line could have quite easily been the other way around. With Kris Williams and Matthew Hibbert making several chances for the forward duo of Adam Knapp and Jason Arnold forcing the Brecon keeper into several saves. Bridgend’s back 4 of goalkeeper Adrian Hibbert, Gareth Collier, John Woodward and Matthew Arthur ensured that only 1 goal was conceded as a result of an excellent defensive display. Stand in skipper Rhodri Owen rallied the troops at half time and ensured Bridgend went into the second half with a never say die attitude. However Brecon doubled their lead but this was the beginning of the Bridgend fight back with a change of short corner routine. Adam Knapp and Jason Arnold combined for youngster Knapp to halve the deficit. Brecon then went up the other end to score a harsh goal to regain the 2 goal league. Bridgend continued to work with midfield trio of Paul Davies, Andy Schofield and Rhodri Owen linking with wingers Rhys Rubery and Kris Williams to win more short corners. Bridgend were able to convert on another 3 occasions with Adam Knapp grabbing a famous hat trick and Jason Arnold scoring the other. Skipper Steve Murphy was very impressed from his sun bed in Kos
Bridgend Mens 3rd XI 8 v Trinity St David’s 1
Bridgend anticipated a tough game against the students from Lampeter University, but were able to overcome their hard and fast running with some good teamwork and accurate passing. Chances were soon created but not taken, until Ian Blatchford baffled the Trinity defence with his hard running for most of the length of the pitch to give Bridgend a well deserved lead with a firm shot beating the Trinity goalkeeper, who did bring off a number of excellent saves during the game to keep the score down.
With Rhydian Lewis and Steve Price controlling the midfield and spreading the ball wide to the ever running Gavin Pound and Andy Davis, Bridgend continued to dominate play, allowing Jeremy Ingram to take his two goals with good skill and perserverance. Good accurate passing was again in evidence as further goals were well taken by Rhydian Lewis and Andy Davis. Unfortunately Jack Steer was unable to get the final touch to two further good crosses from Jeremy and Gavin.
By leading by six goals to one at half time, Bridgend had difficulty in maintaining their dominance in the second half, with their passing becoming somewhat ragged. This allowed Trinity to come more in to the game as they put passes together, but Bridgend’s defence of Derek Jones, Steve Sloan and Steve McIntosh intercepting their attacks with good timing, from which they started further attacks for Bridgend.
There were times, however, when skipper and goalkeeper Cliff Harrison was brought in to play and brought of a number of excellent saves to keep Trinity out from adding to their first half goal. Bridgend added a further goal from Andy Davis following a scrappy goalmouth scramble, with Gavin Pound getting Bridgend’s second in this half, when he latched on a good cross from the right and beat the goalkeeper with a firm accurate shot. However, further shots were well defended by the Trinity defence, but a return to the passing game may have given Bridgned more chances.
All inn all, a creditable performance from Bridgend that should give them confidence for the games ahead.
Bridgend Ladies 2nd XI 4 v Cwmtawe 2
Bridgend ladies stepped up their game, building on the strengths from last week. With a full squad with new and experienced players, Bridgend dominated the game from the offset. Bridgend worked well to set up a goal in the first half.
In the second half Bridgend were unlucky with two short corners which Cwmtawe converted.
Bridgend bounced back, with Hannah Sainsbury and Leanne Jones working well to gain 3 goals in the second half. Really pleased with this week’s performance and good to build on that in next week’s cup round robin. Man of the March Sarah Boyd.