Ruthin Town 2 Denbigh Town 1
Ruthin Town took the honours in the eagerly awaited local derby.
Ruthin enjoyed much of the game and had good chances which were narrowly missed or well saved by Craig Vernon in the Denbigh goal, making fine saves from both the head and boot of Llyr Morris. Just as the Ruthin faithful were beginning to wonder if this was going to be one of those games Ryan Jones proved once again what a good finisher he is. After a sustained period of pressure he controlled the ball in the penalty area and shot into the bottom corner to make it a deserved 1-0 to Ruthin just before half time.
Ruthin settled into the second half and started to pass the ball better as Denbigh tried to respond with Sam Downey and Sam Tate trying to get a foothold in midfield. However, the Denbigh midfield failed to get the ball past the well drilled Ruthin defence with Lewys Turner excelling in his new found role alongside the experienced Kevin Evans.
Denbigh’s frustration began to show as they picked up a couple of yellow cards within minutes of each other for fouls by Miles Todd and Sion Jones and they tried to change things on 55 minutes introducing Scott McHarrie and Rhys Llwyd for Sion Jones and Sam Tate.
Ruthin continued to probe and were awarded a penalty for a rash challenge on Cai Davies who had made an excellent run. Llyr Morris stepped up to take the penalty but once again he was foiled by Vernon diving low to his right and palming the ball away for a corner.
This gave Denbigh a spur for a period which saw Sam Jones go wide with one of the few shots they had during the half. Denbigh’s resurgence was short lived as Ruthin stepped up a gear and on 70 minutes, Llyr Morris finally beat Craig Vernon for the second goal with a great turn on the edge of the box, following a nice flowing passing move, and firing in a well placed shot with some venom.
Ruthin brought on the experienced Gwidion Ifan for youngster Dafydd Wyn Evans, who had another good game, but it was Denbigh’s last substitution which helped Denbigh gain a glimmer of hope. Jake Walker replaced Sam Jones and Walker was subsequently fouled on the edge of the box. Tom Jones scored with a fine free kick which went over the Ruthin wall and passed Ryan Goldston into the net with a few minutes remaining.
With only injury time remaining Stuart Vernon was still able to make one last save, this time diving to his left to deny another fine shot by Ryan Jones. Ruthin managed to keep possession and slow the game down for the next few minutes until the referee blew his whistle to give Ruthin their third win in a row against their near neighbours.