Bridgend 2-8 Marlborough
Bridgend 1sts travelled around an ungodly hour to Marlborough a team a few places above then in the league and was looking for a performance and result that would bring them closer.
Marlborough started strong but Bridgend fought hard and repelled their advances with good defence from Rhys Owen, Matt Wooster, jon Woodward and Ross shaw, Bridgend made a few chances of their own that in another day would of gone in.
Marlborough took the lead off a short corner that wasn’t cleared and further capitalised from some fortunate decisions that saw then score a further 2 goals. Bridgend didn’t give in and before half time got a just reward with Mike Hodges scoring from an osian Jones shot that was saved by the Marlborough keeper. 3-1 at half time.
The midfield of andrew jones, rob Evans, Aj ,paul Jones and jon Rubery worked hard and with james griffiths and Steve Murphy up front trying to put Marlborough on the back foot, but unfortunately Marlborough scored a forth, this spurred Bridgend on and they quickly got their 2nd goal scored by Mike Hodges bagging a brace.
Again the luck gods were not on Bridgend’s side and they conceded another 4 goals before the end of the game, a score line that doesn’t really reflect the game.
Bridgend now face the bottom two teams in their last two league games before the Christmas break, hoping to get maximum points and climb up the league
This week, Bridgend Ladies 1sts travelled to Sophia Gardens to face Cardiff Uni 3rds in dreadful conditions. The game began quite evenly, with both teams having several opportunities to score, however, Cardiff managed to break the defensive line of Bridgend allowing them to score, putting them 1-0 ahead. The uni side used their speed and skill to go in 5-0 at half time. As the second half started Cardiff continued with their onslaught of pressure and possession making the Bridgend defence work tirelessly to stop the final score from being a lot higher. A long awaited consolation goal was scored by Eve Mordecai. Despite Cardiff heavily dominating the game, bridgend improved in the second half, which ended at 3-1, leaving the final score 8-1 to Cardiff Uni
Bridgend 3 v Swansea 1
It was back to Pencoed for the 2nd XI last weekend, with local rivals Swansea making the short trip down the M4, and after three tough weekends, Bridgend were confident of a better outcome after consecutive defeats against the top three teams in the league.
The match started off pretty evenly matched, only for Bridgend to break the deadlock in the first half as ever green right winger and house wife favourite Kris Williams, bearing an uncanny resemblance to Lionel Messi wearing oversized base layers, tapped home past the hapless Swansea keeper. As tap ins go, it was one for the collectors album. Williams picked up the ball on half way, cut infield and left defenders in his wake as he used his raw physical power to race into the ‘D’, weaving between the Swansea defence before slotting it home to open the scoring. This goal galvanised the Ravens, who increased their lead thanks to veteran Andy Schofield, who, having seen fellow winger steal the limelight with the opening goal decided it was time to show what he could do. Having been picked out with a square ball across the ‘D’, Schofield decided route one was the order of the day and struck a fantastic shot to make it 2-0, a lead which the men in blue and white held until half time.
With Swansea rallying before the half time interval, they clawed their way back into proceedings with a deserved goal from a short corner, the ball taking numerous deflections before sneaking in past the last line of defence. Bridgend were having none of it though, and secured the points after an increase in effort in the second half saw the game put to bed. Kris Williams, still sporting his Wizards sleeve like cycling shorts, make the yard yards down the right hand flank, before Jason Arnold teed up hard working yet ‘unwell at half time’ Rhodri Owen who continued his hot streak this season.
Next up… it’s bottom of the table Lansdown away on Saturday 30th November, before the last game before the Christmas break against fourth placed Whitchurch at Pencoed Comprehensive.
Bridgend 2nds v Penarth 4ths 4-3.
Pre match warm up was important with the rain and wind doing is best to put us off. Bridgend started strongly with midfield Jo, Holly, Catrin S and Michelle delivering balls through to Amy, Ella, Beth, Clare and Maia.
The constant presence in Penarth D led to a short corner. Michelle’s strike was saved but Catrin Stephens was on hand to score Bridgend first.
Penarth stepped up a gear but were kept out by Liz, Pauline, Bev, Catrin Rubery, Angharad and keeper Eric who once again played for both the 1sts and 2nds on Saturday. After another sustained attack Bridgend was awarded another short and Jo’s strike this time was expertly diverted into the net. Just before half time and Against the run of play Penarth scored after a strike deflected off a Bridgend player past Eric.
The second half started strongly again for Bridgend with Amy and Ella combining well from the midway line all the way to the d where Ella scored. Penarth managed to break through again and brought the score back to 3 -2. Bridgend put another attack together and Clare persistent hassling of the defence led to the attack breaking though and Beth scored the fourth goal. In the final 5 minutes a break through from Penarth and shot on goal deflected from the post on to the back of Eric’s glove making the final score 4-3 to Bridgend. The rolling sub strategy and strong performance by all the team helped to secure another win for 2nds. What is particularly pleasing is how the younger members of the team really stepped up. Player of the match Ella.
Bridgend 3s 14 Llan & Caerphilly 0. A cliché of a game of two halves. 4 nil in the first half, 10 nil in the second. Fairplay to Llan turning up with 9 men on a cold wet afternoon knowing they were likely going to get abit of a pasting. It took bridgend around 10 minutes to get the first after relentless pressure. Llan were allowing us to attack and were resolute in defending. However, as the half wore on we were able to slot in 4 in total. Half time team talk was to play the ball quickly, move them around more to create the space. To devastating effect we scored 10 in the second half. Jon Murphy with 4 goals gets a mention as does Lewis Kerrigan who scored on his debut and was excellent. Another debutant Rhys also managed to score twice. A good victory to make up for last weeks disappointing defeat against the medics. We go again next week to maintain the push for promotion.
Gwent ‘C’ 4 – 4 Bridgend ‘C’
There are brass bands, good brass bands, great brass bands and then… the Cory Band. Based in Treorchy they are the current British, European, World and, since last weekend, Brass In Concert champions – a grand slam only once before achieved… by the Cory Band. Your correspondent was privileged to see them perform a fortnight ago at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama and they were mesmerising. Precise to the point of obsession, breathtaking in performance, exhilarating in conveyed emotion. Perfect teamwork broadcast in music.
Their most recent album, released last year, is entitled ‘Summon the Heroes’. You can hear a trailer for it here to give you the merest hint of what it contains: https://youtu.be/cownYrtyfx0. Summon the Heroes – how perfect a description for the performance of the Mens ‘C’ away versus Gwent, a team which had simply taken them apart in the corresponding fixture earlier in the season and achieved a victory that bordered on the humiliating.
Not so on Saturday 23rd November! Behind 4 times to well taken Gwent goals, Bridgend simply would not yield. Moreover, the Bridgend youngsters came of age, tearing into their opponents with a heroic zeal not witnessed since, perhaps, the bugs decided to take on their ant oppressors in the titanic ‘Bugs Life’. This was raw sport at the lower levels, 2 teams going at each other toe to toe for nothing other than pride and a sense of shared experience and fulfilment.
2 short corners from your correspondent kept Bridgend in the game but then the mercurial Louis slotted home his first goal for the club with a preposterous piece of skill following an exemplary Dafydd cross from the right. James in the centre of midfield hustled and bustled to disrupt Gwent throughout and his winning of a tackle saw the ball moved to Nick, who ran at the panicking Gwent defence and slammed home a goal to give Bridgend a point and an awesome feeling of collective camaraderie and spirit which was positively Cory-esque!
A couple of final mentions to the increasingly assured Barnaby and honorary Mutley Medals to Dave, Derek, JT, Cliff, Jack, and Mathias.
Summon the Heroes!