Home » Old Gold earn narrow win over Swansea Uni

Old Gold earn narrow win over Swansea Uni

CARMARTHEN overcame both an unyielding University team and relentless difficult weather conditions to extend their unbeaten sequence in the Cymru South League to 17 matches – a sequence that began in August against these same opponents.

The match began with a fierce, swirling wind blowing the length of the pitch and in the early stages both sides struggled as passes and crosses were frequently over-hit ensuring that barely any cohesive attacking play from either side arose.

Yet gradually the players became more accustomed to these conditions – and, in particular, the home side began to put some noticeable pressure on the Old Gold defence with several spirited raids.

However, the experienced central defensive pairing of Lee Surman and Scott Tancock looked sound and secure as usual, while Jordan Vickers and Trystan Jones gave them valuable support on the flanks.

Behind them Ifon Knott once again demonstrated safe-handling and good positioning whenever he was called upon.

In addition, ahead of the defensive unit were midfielders Greg Walters, Tom Dyson and Jamie Rickard who, with their industry and vision, eagerly provided a further layer of defensive cover whenever necessary, while always remaining alert to any opportunity for breaking forward and launching an attack.

As a result, during this spell of pressure the only significant goal threat arose on 29 minutes when George Sellick sent an inviting cross into the Town goalmouth only for two well-placed strikers to fail to reach the ball.

And that failing proved even more costly for the hosts since it was immediately followed by a further period of Old Gold ascendency – a far more productive one.

After 31 minutes Adam John sent a corner-kick into the packed goalmouth where Rickard saw his close-range glancing header slide narrowly outside the post. This was swiftly followed by a series of promising attacks that stretched the home defence but, sadly, initially failed to penetrate it.

However, in the 35th minute Carmarthen were at last rewarded for their persistence and invention – Rickard, from near the left touchline, launched a searching free-kick into the crowded penalty area where Surman, rising high above several defenders, headed the ball towards the goalmouth and Town’s all-time top goal-scorer Thomas gratefully converted the opportunity.

Town continued to dominate the remaining stages of the first-half but, with the fierce high winds seeming to strengthen, they were unable to create any further scoring opportunities.

After the interval the Old Gold quickly resumed their search for more goals. On 53 minutes John fired a corner-kick deep into the penalty area only for Surman to direct his strong header narrowly outside the post.

Moments later a delightful exchange of passes along the left flank led to the chance for John to dispatch a sharp angled volley that finished in the side-netting.

Then on 63 minutes John sent another corner-kick deep into the packed penalty area and saw Tancock’s close-range header blocked on the goal-line before the ball was cleared by a defender.

After that flurry of goalmouth activity the match became more settled and confined to the midfield with the Old Gold enjoying most of the possession. But in the closing stages the home side twice went close to snatching an equaliser.

On 86 minutes former Town favourite Tim Hicks launched the ball from near the touchline and saw it carried by the strong wind into the goalmouth forcing ‘keeper Ifon Knott to turn the ball aside.

Then deep into added time Adam Orme struck a powerful free-kick that Knott, with another spectacular flying save, resisted.

Carmarthen’s unbeaten run has seen them progressively move up the League table following a disappointing start to the season – however, with just 8 matches left to play and given that none of the teams above us are showing signs of seriously fading in form, any prospect of promotion now seems remote.

Town’s next match should provide a better clue – on Saturday March 5 they travel to Llantwit Major (k/o 2.30pm) who have been at, or close to, the top of the League table virtually all season.