Bridgend 1st XI 3-2 Clifton Robinsons
Bridgend in resurgent form made the short trip over the bridge to Clifton, looking to maintain their winning streak and continue their ascent to safety. The game started at mediocre pace, with both teams tentatively testing their opponents. Michael Hodges had the game’s first opportunity as a delightful show of skill saw him bypass two defenders to create an opportunity to shoot, which unfortunately went wide of the target. Bridgend looked happiest in this game of attrition, with Robinsons having only one meaningful attack in the first half, a short corner easily snuffed out by Adrian Hibbert. The other end of the pitch saw Bridgend start to show some dominance over the game, Tim Hodges received the ball amongst a crowd of players, turning quickly he flicked the ball over a defenders stick and made his way into the ‘D’ and unleashed a fierce strike, which broke the backboard. Bridgend continued with more of the possession only having to quash some speculative counter attacks. Matthew Wooster began another run of Bridgend possession finding Tim Hodges again who drew a defender towards him freeing up Steve Murphy who beat the goal keeper from close range. This took Bridgend into the break at two goals up.
The second half saw a different Bridgend style emerge as the tentative attacks became very measured passages of controlled passing. The transfer of possession from right to left pivoting around Rhydian Cole and Tim Hodges in the middle saw Michael Hodges push forward down the right causing havoc for the defence. The constant threat of attack unfortunately worked against Bridgend as it forced Clifton to sit deeper not allowing Bridgend the room to generate meaningful chances. A change in tact saw Bridgend look to upgrade their opportunities to short corners, which Rhodri Owen came close to doing on two occasions only to be denied by misfortune rather than skill. Both wingers Paul Jones and Michael Hodges threatened continuously, the threat eventually becoming a short corner. Tim Hodges initial strike was stopped, with the rebound controlled by Rhys Owen who crossed the ball square to a waiting Tim Hodges who deflected the ball into the goal. The following few minutes saw a lapse in concentration for Bridgend who appeared to become complacent, the first threat saw Adrian Hibbert negate a one-on-one chance for Clifton, a save which would subsequently prove vital, as the home team then scored twice from short corners. Bridgend’s lead pegged back to only one, it was all hands to the defensive pump. However normal service was resumed with Kris Holyoake and Matthew Wooster intercepting threats, the latter toying with the opposition as he advanced half the pitch with the ball taking on four players effortlessly. Vital clean ups from John Woodward and Michael Hodges deep in the Bridgend defensive zone allowed Bridgend to retain possession and saw Paul Jones tune down the rest of the game time securing a victory for Bridgend.
Bridgend 1s 1-4 Radnor
Scorer Jaz Gamble
MOTM Beth Price
Bridgend made the long journey to mid wales. Bridgend started strong and had 2 short corners within the first 5 minutes but unfortunately couldn’t capitalise. Radnor made a break down the left side and a few quick passes led to a goal for the home team. They used this momentum and scored another goal susccession. Bridgend tried to fight back but unfortunately the home game managed to score again before the half time. Right on the whistle Bridgend was awarded a short corner but were unable to get the ball past the goalie who made some great saves.
The second half started much better for Bridgend who finally found their form and were passing the ball around in the space well. A free hit from inside their 25 was passed into the D from Louise Jones and Jaz Gamble scored a great goal from the penalty spot. Although Bridgend continued to fight well and keeper Beth Price made some good saves, Radnor were able to score again and the full time score was 4-1 to the home team.
Cardiff and Met Ladies 4-Bridgend Ladies 4
Bridgend 2nds played Cardiff & Met 5ths in a dry run for the cup semi’s next weekend. Cardiff settled into their game quickest scoring two goals in the first 10 minutes. Bridgend replied with Michelle dribbling the ball through to Jo who struck the ball cleanly into the back of the net. Solid work between midfielders Cerys, Sherry and Chessie kept the ball in Cardiff’s half and the forwards were rewarded with a short corner. Maia injected to Jo who slipped the ball for Angharad to strike the second goal. The second half started with a continuation of the pressure, however a superb break through from Cardiff led to their third goal. Bridgend brought pressure on the Cardiff defence again and Michelle had a brilliant individual run through to the d and dodged the keeper to draw the score level once again. Great work from Carys, Chessie and Casey brought the play back into the opposition half gaining another short corner. This time the ball was slipped to Jo to score her second goal and earn her Man of the match, putting Bridgend in the lead for the first time. Another break through saw Cardiff gaining a short corner and a striking shot managed to get past the Bridgend defence. A fantastic team effort from all.