REPORT BY RICHARD ROWLANDS
This midweek fixture following Aberdare’s poor display at Dinas Powys saw a vast improvement in attitude and endeavour but the losing
Manager Wayne Powell made wholesale changes to the line up with the return of Rhys Williams and Phil Clarke to defence with James
Harris back between the sticks and a new pairing of Elliot Morris and Jon Phillips starting up front .
There was an early chance for Phillips but his hooked effort fell kindly for Buds keeper Kyle Jones.
As the game developed the visitors began to show up well with Scott Armitage creating some dangerous moves from midfield and Levi Rees
producing some strong runs keeping the Town defence on their toes.
However despite their attacking promptings and some neat movement displayed by Town, neither keeper had really been tested until as far
in as the thirtieth minute when Luke Davies, up for a set piece saw his header on goal smartly saved by Jones.
In the thirty third minute a Buds free kick taken by Dan Richards saw a static defence allow Kieran Thomas time and space to plant his
header past the despairing dive of Harris for the lead. Buds now raised the pressure and minutes later a Levi Rees stinger was well tipped
over by Harris.
Buds were certainly in the ascendancy though one rare break saw Tomos Morris let fly with a shot that Kyle Jones did well to grasp.
Buds came close to extending their lead when a deflected shot on goal saw Harris scrambling back to tip over but the final dangerous move
of the half saw Town’s Rhys Tandy and Matthew Glassey combine well to set up Phillips who was bundled over on the edge of the box and
his resultant free kick clawed away to safety by the excellent Jones.
Half Time: Aberdare Town 0-1 Aberbargoed Buds
Having not really hurt Buds in the first period Powell made immediate second half changes with Kevin Davies and Phil Clarke replaced by
Seb Haggett and Jordan Coles.
The latter was to influence matters greatly with some superb long range passes whilst overall there was a new found energy in the home
team’s play .
Man of the match, Rhys Tandy was becoming a handful for the Buds rear guard and he was desevedly involved in the equalizer.
A fully thirty yard Coles crossfield pass found the exciting winger and as he approached the box was desperately blocked with the ball
running out for a corner. Coles took the set piece and there was Phillips with his initial header hitting the cross bar but rebounding back to
him and making no mistake nodding in for a deserved leveller.
Buds were under the cosh now but still capable of producing quick breaks from defence and Rees was again the danger when from one
such attack Harris had to clamber to safety himself fortunate and a Tom Davies header flash narrowly wide.
Midfielder Tomos Morris had picked up an early second half yellow and could count himself lucky not to receive another and with it a red for
a so called professional foul to deny a quick break. He was however off the field within minutes having appeared to have picked up a thigh
strain and to be replaced by Myles Case.
At the other end Tandy was a constant menace and one move involving him ,Phillips and Elliot Morris was worthy of an higher stage but
unfortunately only ending in a corner. Killian Kingston went close with an header from that set piece.
There was to follow shortly, a succession of corners all well taken by Coles but with no one there to apply the finishing touch and the final of
this series seeing a Luke Davies header fly over the cross bar to bring this period of pressure to a unproductive end. But the best chance by
far to grab the three points came in the 89th minute when yet again, brilliant wing play by the irrepressible Tandy saw his cross met by the
head of Elliot Morris from just a few yards out only to see it balloon over the bar .
Hardly had the groans subsided when Buds broke upfield and there was the ever dangerous Levi Rees to strike home for the lead .
The injury time period saw Aberdare desperately commit all to attack but the chances spurned had come back to bite them before referee
Neil Wilcox blew for time.
An opportunity to leapfrog fellow strugglers Croesyceiliog and AFC Llwydcoed had been missed and now Aberdare face a series of games
against strong promotion hopefuls beginning with a trip west to Ammanford on Saturday and the following Wednesday welcoming Pontypridd
Town to the Parc for another floodlight fixture.
Man of the Match: Rhys Tandy
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