Match Report - Away v Pontypridd Town on 27th April 19. Provided by Jason Davies
Pontypridd Town 2-1 Undy AFC
Scorer - A Jarman
Starting 11 - Smallcombe. Waters, Barnes, Parry, Smith. Alex Jarman, Dan Jarman, Woods, Power, Wright. Cullimore
Subs - Thompson (on for A Jarman 45)
Whilst not a classic, and definitely not one for the purists, we lost an exciting encounter right at the death. On a terrible pitch on a very windy day, neither team would have enjoyed the playing conditions but I think it's fair to say Pontypridd's route one style was affected less by the conditions.
We played down the slope with the wind first half. With the home team constantly trying to go direct there were a lot of aerial battles as the ball was just getting lifted on the wind. We coped well enough though and in truth Smalls made his first save of any note right at the end of the half. When we were able to get it down our attempts at quick passing football were often ruined by the pitch but we caused some problems with our pace and energy. In fact there was less than 10 minutes on the clock when a good break saw us force a corner. It was cleared but the wind meant it only carried to Alex Jarman, 20 yards out, who controlled a brilliant volley in to the top corner. The game developed in to a counter attacking set up for us. We were strong in defence and quick to try and break. We got in to some good areas but the nearest we came to a second was when a Woods free kick was smartly saved by their keeper. Pretty much any set piece in our half was an attacking option for the home side as they added a long throw to the constant long ball approach. We stayed strong though and battled our way to a half time lead. Just before the break, another good counter Saw Alex burst in to their half, only to pull up with a hamstring problem that saw him replaced at half time by Gyles. Half time - Undy lead 1-0.
It wasn't hard to work out what the second half would be like. Although it was an enforced changed bringing Gyles in to left back, with Olly moving on to midfield, gave us more height to cope with the aerial raids. And we coped pretty well. It was a fairly constant barrage and we didn't get out of our half very often and torrential rain decided to join the howling gales. There wasn't to much to worry us early on and indeed their frustration was clear when they changed one of their front men early in the half. They saw no need to revert to a plan b though so it was just a case of whether they could make it work. In the end we conceded on 75 from a brilliantly struck, but wind assisted, free kick from their full back from fully 25 yards. Based on possession and attempts you couldn't really argue at the score line at this stage. We rallied well though and created a great chance to take the lead when a great Delivery from Olly was headed in to Gylo's path by Paz only for him to hit over the bar from 12. As we headed towards injury time it looked like a hard earned point was ours but sadly as another long ball dropped in our box we lost concentration and a simple through ball (on the deck for the first time all day) played in their striker who rolled home from close range. No time left to rally - battled to the end but lost 2-1.
Whilst Pontypridd celebrated joyfully we were understandably gutted. Pontypridd have invested in a new coaching staff ( including our very own Steve Lowndes ) and a lot of players and they have done well to haul themselves clear of the bottom 3. It would have been interesting to see how how we fared on a good pitch on a calm day but that is probably why their coach has chosen to play that way. Pontypridd's party took another twist when results for Taffs Well and Goytre confirmed they could not finish in the bottom 3. Their dressing room became awash with champagne at that point. Our boys were more subdued but their recent form had now also meant we are assured on finishing outside of the bottom 3. It means we can play our last 4 games without that threat affecting us and hopefully move nearer to 40 points. I'm sure the management team learned more about us again today but I would say that our spirit was excellent and we worked tirelessly to get a result.
MOM for me - Bucko Waters. Superb again.