Disappointing start for 10 men Town
Denbigh Town 1 - 5 Holywell Town
An expectant crowd gathered at Central Park for the opening game of the season. Denbigh’s new 470 seater stand was on show for the first competitive game and the large crowd were looking forward to an entertaining game with both sides looking to do well this season.
However, a decisive decision just before half time saw the visitors take control of the game after Denbigh’s Craig Pritchard was red carded as the game stood evenly balanced at 1-1.
The game had started well with both teams playing good football and it was Holywell who took an early five minute lead when Steve Lewis beat Denbigh’s offside trap and broke free from a Matty Harvey long ball to steer the ball past an outstretched Hill-Dunt in Denbigh’s goal
Denbigh looked to make an immediate reply and Kristian Pierce made an exciting run at the Holywell defence only for his cross to come to nothing as Holywell cleared to safety.
Denbigh continued to pile pressure on Holywell and Liam Smith dribbled past several Holywell defenders but he was unable to supply a telling end to a great run
Despite Denbigh’s pressure Holywell were looking dangerous on the break and had several close offside calls made against them as they looked to beat Town’s offside trap.
Town’s strikers Jake Eyre & Josh Davies were proving a threat up front and on 41 minutes they combined well for Davies to supply Eyre to blast past Holywell keeper Griffiths to give Denbigh their deserved equaliser.
Denbigh now had the impetus, but as Craig Pritchard went in on a fifty fifty ball against a Holywell defender, referee Mike Gray deemed it dangerous and reached for the red card which made such a change to the outcome of the game
Town went in at half time deservedly on even terms but within 2 minutes of the restart a move down the right wing from Holywell saw a low cross reach Shaun Tuck and he fired in from close range to make it 2-1 for the Wellmen.
Denbigh were now up against it and Hill- Dunt was forced into a fine save as Holywell broke through and he dived at the forward’s feet to rob him of the ball.
Pierce and Cook were industrious for Denbigh and made forays into the Holywell half, only for the final passes to be cut out by the opposing defenders as Holywell made their extra man prove to be a major factor in the game.
The Wellmen’s third goal came on 58 minutes when Steve Lewis played a ball onto Jamie McDaid to finish.
Denbigh made changes and introduced Alan Bull and Nathan Williams for Josh Davies and Andrew Stockton , but this did not stop the Holywell attack as Steve Lewis scored his second of the game on 75 minutes and then on 87 minutes Jamie McDaid slotted home a penalty to make it 5-1 after Hill-Dunt was judged to have brought down a Holywell forward.
A disappointing start to the season for Denbigh, who had matched Holywell in an entertaining first half. The sending off proved crucial to the outcome of the game and Town now move on to their next game away at Gresford on Friday 18th August with an early kick off at 6.30pm
Jon Hill-Dunt, Liam Smith, Andrew Stockton, Dan Sullivan, Ben Nash, Matt Cooke, Kristian Pierce, Gareth Partridge, Jake Eyre, Josh Davies, Craig Pritchard Subs: Alan Bull, Nathan Williams, Jack Riley, Sam Tate, Lewys Turner
Joe Griffiths, Phil Lloyd, Steven Thomas, Danny Dejormack, Matty Harvey, Jon Jones, Brady McGullaway, Paul D Williams, Shaun Tuck, Steve Lewis, Jamie McDaid. Subs: Graeme Williams, Darren Gowans, Jack Pennington, Christopher Boulton
Referee: Mike Gray