Sport

Stalemate at Park Avenue

Aberystwyth Town 0

Llandudno 0

screen-shot-2016-11-17-at-09-44-31FOLLOWING last Friday’s sensational 4-0 win against Rhyl, Aber were on the hunt for another three points against fellow Top Six hopefuls Llandudno in the second ever game on their new 3G pitch.

It was an end-to-end game throughout on Sunday (Oct 23), with both teams’ attacks being cancelled out by the resolute defending on show from both backlines.

Prior to kick off, a minute silence was held in honour of the 50th anniversary of the Aberfan disaster, which took the lives of 144 people, predominantly children, in 1966.

The minute silence was also honoured to the tragic news of the passing of local man Eifion Gwynne, who played and worked closely with Aberystwyth RFC. As a club, they would like to pass on their condolences to the family and friends of Eifion Gwynne during this most difficult time.

Llandudno started the brightest, with a penalty shout turned down by the referee and a looping Gareth Evans header well-saved by Aber keeper Chris Mullock within the first five minutes.

Aber found their feet, though, with Chris Jones being Aber’s bright spark down the left flank, crossing well to an empty back-post.

Llandudno were back on top before long, but with increasing pressure came increased composure by Aber’s back four – Ricky Watts, Sam Rodon, Ryan Wollacott and Dan Alfei – as Wollacott made a potentially goal-saving challenge on 11 mins.

Another good block by Mullock against the on-rushing Gareth Evans saw the ball roll wide as the deadlock was held. Towards the end of the first half, Aber’s best spell of possession saw Luke Borrelli’s left-footed volley collected by former Seasider Dave Roberts.

Another committed challenge by Ryan Wollacott saw the first half draw to a goalless close in front of the 548 spectators.

The second half began with a beautifully lofted free kick by Chris Jones finding the diving head of captain Luke Sherbon, whose effort hit the crossbar to the relief of former Aber manager Alan Morgan.

With Aber on top, chances came and went, with crosses not finding a target and headed balls finding the gloves of Roberts.

Following a good 15 minutes by Aber, Llandudno saw their best chance of the game with the bright Lewis Buckley beating the offside trap, only to smash the outside of the post in a one-on-one with Mullock.

The final 30 minutes were cautious but competitive, with both sides attacking and looking for a winner, but not wanting to concede one themselves. Aber’s Kurtis March and Chris Jones combined well with Jones being released down the right, only for his shot to be stopped by Roberts. It wasn’t until centre-back Will Bell entered the field of play on 87 mins, replacing Luke Sherbon, did Aber get their best chance on goal, with the makeshift central-midfielder cushioning a side-footed strike from 25 yards that looked destined to break Llandudno hearts, only for Roberts to pull off a brilliant finger-tip save to deny his fellow Liverpudlian.

History did not repeat itself when Aber gained a last minute corner which was cleared by the well-organised Llandudno defence, which was followed by referee Kevin Parry’s final whistle.

A fair result in the end, with both defences holding strong against the pressures of the opposite team’s attack. Aber will now look forward to Saturday’s (Oct 29) WPL game vs Airbus UK Broughton, which will be live on S4C’s Sgorio, kick-off being at 5.15pm at Park Avenue. The club would like to thank the fans for their continued support and hope to see an equally impressive following next week.

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Dayne Stone

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