HOTSPUR FIGHTBACK IN VAIN
Although deserving of a point at the end of the 90 minutes, Holyhead Hotspur boss Campbell Harrison will surely point to the first half hour as a contributy factor to a 2-1 reverse at Caersws. The initial 30 minutes or so Hotspur players seemed to be still in the dressing room as the hosts dominated play taking a firm foot hold on proceedings as the visitors struggled to get to grips with the hosts and striker John Owen showing why he is one of the best in the division. Scott Williams had given the Bluebirds a 14th minute lead which could have been a lot worse for Holyhead. At last they began to put their game together and gave as good as they got for the remainder of the half. The second period was only ten minutes in when Hotspur drew level with a smart instinctive half volley from in for Mel McGinness via a Julian Williams assist. This galvanised the Holy Islanders into a much better second 45 minutes in a keenly contested encounter on a sticky pitch and was destined to go either way going into the closing stages. However, it was perhaps inevitable that man of the match John Owen would instigate the final say, his excellent close control down the left taking him to the edge of the penalty area crossing for the lurking Scott Williams to hit his second giving Carl Jones no chance. Hotspur were not done for and desperate defending saw Caersws full back Jack Hughes receiving his marching orders for a second yellow but his team held out, just.
Hotspur manager had received the Manager of the Month award for February but as we all know it usually puts the ‘mockers’ on the next game as it did here!!
Holyhead Hotspur will now have three successive home fixtures, Buckley Town this Friday night (7.30 pm), Caernarfon Town Tuesday 24th March 7.30 pm and Denbigh Town Saturday 28th March 2.30 pm as they push for a top four place.
Nip + Tuck first moments in the game Jack Parr for Caersws and Jay Gibbs for Holyhead testing keepers, however hosts in control with John Owen prominent in a number of home build ups and the pressure would surely tell and it did on 14, but for what seemed an innocuous situation when a ball reached Scott Williams on the left and his flighted high ball into the goalmouth seemed to deceive keeper Carl Jones and drop high into the far corner of the net. Holyhead hadn’t got going and Parr hit a first time shot just wide on 26. Holyhead at last got going and good work by Gareth Jones Evans on the left did very well to get a great ball across for Mel McGinness to head just over. On 31 Owen in for Caersws but Carl Jones out very quickly to spot the danger and block and likewise against Steve Blenkinsop.
On 35 Mike Edwards hit a great searching ball into the goalmouth which just evaded Julian Williams. Much more even now and after a smart move Jay Gibbs free kick found Rhys Roberts whose header was deflected for a corner at the far post. Just after the home keeper Chris Brown had to charge out of goal to bring down Julian Williams just outside of the box, but free kick came to nothing. HT 1-0
Good contest now and Holyhead drew level on 55 – Julian Williams pulled free of his defenders and quickly played a ball across to Mel McGinness who with the keeper coming out to meet him had to shoot early and his instinctive half-volley hurtled into the top of the net.
Holyhead were in the game now and Gareth Jones Evans’ snapshot drifted wide on 62. On 67 Ryan Jones was in full flow down the right but defender Jack Hughes took a booking for his team and Ryan needed treatment. On 70 Steve Blenkinsop across to Scott Williams who put wide. Nip + Tuck but on 80 Hughes into Iwan Williams who scooped an excellent opportunity wide. Caersws were coming strong again and John Owen was proving difficult to contain and it was his fine play down the left on 86 when beating off Holyhead challenges who set up the winning goal crossing into the goalmouth and finding Scott Williams who fired home past Jones. Holyhead Hotspur responded and bookings for both sides. Holyhead piling on the pressure and a foul on the edge of the box saw Hughes receive a second yellow. Despite heavy pressure the hosts held out and Holyhead left frustrated they did not return home with anything but the bad start hardly helped and Manager Harrison may have had mixed feelings about his monthly award!!!
Gareth M Davies.