News from the New Stadium

cefn druidsIn the aptly named ‘Rock Stadium’ the home of Cefn Druids, Campbell Harrison’s Holyhead Hotspur team gave a rock-like performance in gaining a well-deserved share of the spoils against one of the leading contenders for the Huws Gray Alliance title this season, the ancients wanting a quick return to the Welsh Premier but having to settle for one point on this occasion coming up against enterprising visitors who also where keen on all three!

Both teams had chances to go ahead in the first half hour, but it was Hotspur who broke the deadlock on 33 minutes when Ryan Jones was quick to pounce on a loose ball to steer the ball home for a lead which was held up to the break.  However, the hosts upped the tempo in the second half drawing level when Adam Hesp stabbed home in a crowded goalmouth just on the hour.  The game which was totally competitive throughout then became up for grabs and while resolute defending was the order of the day for Holyhead several times the hosts had to be aware at the back themselves with Damian Ketley’s late strike ruled offside with just five minutes to go.  It was an excellent all round team performance and a big boost of confidence ahead of this Saturday’s home Huws Gray Alliance game against Mold Alexandra 2.30 pm kick off, and the following weekends visit to other high flyers and title contenders Caernarfon Town.

The early exchanges were fairly even but on 11 Corey Jones sent a defence splitting ball through to Ryan Jones on the right and the pacey winger bore down on goal only for Druids keeper Adam McGee to spread himself well and block Jones’ effort.  Then on 17 Jones was fouled just outside the box only for Kenleigh Owen’s well taken free kick to be pushed around by McGee for a corner.  At the other end on 20 Craig Whitfield crossed to the unmarked Jack Graham at the far post who headed a gilt edged chance wide of the target, while barely a minute later a cross from the right side saw central defender Alex Jones do superbly under pressure to make a goal line clearance.  On 31 Rhys Roberts did very well to move the ball on to Jamie Roberts who shot over.  Two minutes later came the Hotspur breakthrough – Roberts crossed into the goalmouth which was only half cleared and Ryan Jones sensing the opportunity tore in and drove the ball hard and low past McGee.  Hotspur kept control of the lead into half-time.  (HT 0-1)

Cefn Druids looked sprightly at the start of the second period as they upped their attacking tempo putting heavy pressure on Hotspur’s goal and Carl Jones made a fine save to his right as his team survived a goalmouth scramble.  On the hour the hosts drew level – A corner on the right was headed down by Robbie James and defender Adam Hesp up for the attack poked the ball home from short range.  Cefn Druids were enjoying their best spell now and Graham shot wide when Gareth Partridge was in a more favourable position.  Ryan Kershaw after a good penetrating run was close but the Hotspur defence stood firm closing their opponents down well despite more pressure.  Hotspur were always threatening and Jamie Roberts was within inches of getting through after good approach work and five minutes from the end looked as if they would be returning home with maximum points when a Druids defensive lapse left Roberts in but he opted instead to find Damian Ketley who netted but was in an offside position, when he could have looked to find the target himself.  In the second minute of added on time Cefn Druids’ Dave Forbes was dismissed for a second yellow after a needless heavy challenge from behind.

Match report by Gareth M Davies