Aber Town secure fortuitious victory over Carmarthen

ABERYSTWYTH Town were fortuitious to walk away with three key points after an own goal by Carmarthen Town’s Craig Hanford. If the “Old Gold” had won the game, Aberystwyth would have been three points adrift in the relegation zone and would have been contemplating a long bleak winter battling to get out of it.

One high point of the game was the performance of goalkeeper Mike Lewis. Lewis, who joined Aberystwyth from Carmarthen in the summer, played the season opener before being dropped in favour of James Wood. With Aber shipping in 31 goals in just 11 games, the fans had been arguing for the recall of Lewis and the returning goalkeeper played a blinder as he kept a clean sheet.

The opposition goal saw the return of Steve Cann to Aberystwyth as he put on a stellar performance to try and keep Carmarthen in the game.

Carmarthen’s side dominated Aber physically, Matthew Rees the center back time and time again outmuscled both Jordan Follows and Josh MacAuley who were leading the line for Aber due to the absence of Glyndwr Hughes through injury. Much travelled veteran Julian Alsop was also carrying a large amount of timber although he didn’t put it to good use due to his lack of pace.

The main outlet for Aber in the first half was through Declan Carroll. The tricky midfielder danced around the more slower and lumbering players in the Carmarthen side and he forced Cann to pull off a tremendous save. After quick counter attacks, MacAuley also posed ‘the Old Gold’ problems but due to lack of options in the box and typical indecision from the former Tranmere winger, nothing productive came from his time on the ball.

At the other end, Lewis made great saves from both McCreesh and Quigley as he staked his claim for a first team place, but the sides went in at half time on even terms, with very little to separate them.

The second half was played in the same spirit as the first, no real clear cut chances for Aber as they failed to penetrate the strong defence of Carmarthen and the away side had few chances, the most notable of which from Liam Thomas who struck a sweet drive from 20 yards which was palmed away by Lewis, only to find out the whistle had already been blown. A fantastic save nevertheless.

Aber had two chances of note in the second half, Carroll once again proving to be an effective thorn in the side of the Carmarthen defence as he set himself up for a volley which lacked power in the end but still had to be caught by Steve Cann. The second was bizarre, but on the 63rd minute ended up in the net and captured three important points for Aber.

Cledan Davies sprinted down the left wing on one of his trademark runs, and crossed the ball behind the line of attack with Jordan Follows picking it up on the opposite side of the box.

Tentatively, he came forward and attempted to drive the ball across the box to a team-mate but instead it deflected off the boot of Craig Hanford who was lingering in the middle of the box and spun backwards over the head of a sprawling Steve Cann into the goal.

The rest of the half saw very few chances although there was always the worry of Carmarthen breaking forward but the Aber defence remained strong and saw the game out to clinch an important victory.

Equally nice to see, was the return of the 1970 Amateur cup winning side, although it is strange to find the club didn’t make more of a mention of this at the game to recognise them. Fantastic to see the camaraderie of players from 40 years ago still existing today.

Next up for ‘the Seasiders’ are Bala Town at Maes Tegid. The game will be broadcast live on S4C starting at 12.45 and with the possibility of Hughes being available for the game, hopes are that they can grab another few points and move up the table.