Town lose out in close game
Llanrhaeadr YM 1-0 Denbigh Town
This was a game Denbigh needed to win against a team two points below them at the start of play with the aim to move away from the lower part of the Huws Gray Cymru Alliance. With the season reaching its final stages it was vital the team put on a strong display to follow on from their last game, a 2-1 win at Penrhyncoch.
It was’nt to be when despite a promising first half, Denbigh succumbed to a 69th minute strike from Llanrhaeadr’s Iwan Matthews which was enough for the Mid Wales to claim all three points and leapfrog Denbigh in the league table
Denbigh’s joint managers Dewi Llion and Matty Jones selected the same starting eleven that had started at Penrhyncoch.
On a very heavy pitch and playing into a strong wind and driving rain Denbigh had the early opportunities with Kristian Pierce’s shot from 20 yards just going wide of the post and shortly after Pat Hinchcliffe received a ball from Pierce and his shot was deflected for a corner. Mark Roberts was unlucky when he received a ball from Stuart Vernon and his shot was palmed away by the Llanrhaeadr keeper Jimmy Hayns for a corner.
Denbigh’s best chance of the half fell to Pierce after some great work from Mark Roberts. Pierce rounded Hayns inside the hosts’ penalty area but with the heavy conditions his shot on goal was cleared off the line by a last gasp clearance from Llanrhaeadr defender Dan Weaver and away for a corner.
Llanrhaeadr responded and it was a vital interception from Town defender Bailey Jackson that stopped Iwan Matthew breaking through on goal. Soon after the hosts had their best chance of the half when Matthews played a low ball from his left wing across Denbigh’s goal for Joe Vaughan to shoot just wide of Craig Vernon’s goal.
Town continued to have chances with Sam Downey trying from outside the box only for Haynes to make a comfortable save and then on 37 minutes Lewis Sirrell had a well struck shot from 18 yards tipped over by Hayns who was the busier of the two keepers in the first half.
An innocuous challenge on Sam Downey saw him having to be treated for a blood injury and whilst he finished the first half, the knock meant he gave way for Sam Jones in the second half.
Jones was in the thick of the action straight away when he was on the receiving end of a Scott McHarrie cross. He brought the ball down on the edge of the six yard box and shot but the attempt was blocked and Mark Roberts was unable to capitalise on the rebound. Bailey Jackson then broke down the left wing to cross and when the hosts cleared the ball fell to Pat Hinchcliffe whose shot was comfortably saved by Hayns.
On 52 minutes came Denbigh’s best chance of the half as Hinchcliffe cut in from the right hand side and laid a ball onto Mark Roberts whose shot hit the bottom of the post and bounced away to safety.
Llanrhaeadr stepped up a gear and from Marc Griffiths’ free kick on the edge of Denbigh’s penalty area the shot went over the five man wall forcing Craig Vernon into a fine save diving to his right hand side.
Miles Todd replace the injured Stuart Vernon on 66 minutes at right back. However it was down the opposite wing that Tom Evans broke and crossed for Iwan Matthews in the penalty box in the 69th minute. He turned and fired his shot well past the outstretched arms of Craig Vernon to give Llanrhaeadr a 1-0 lead.
Denbigh looked to respond but went through a scrappy spell when the heavy pitch seemed to hamper their forays on the Llanrhaeadr goal. Town sub Jake Walker had an opportunist chance when his header went agonisingly wide of the target. As the game reached its final stages captain Tony Davies pushed up front and he fired a dipping volley from 18 yards which just went over the bar.
But the elusive goal would not come Denbigh’s way and at the end it was Llanrhaeadr who were celebrating the win, their first in their last six outings. Denbigh’s focus must now be on returning to winning ways and they get that opportunity when they visit Prestatyn Town on Friday 15th February in what is another key game for them.
Jimmy Hayns, Dan Weaver, Khyam Wyton, Tom Bailey, Iain Edmunds, Dan Graham, Sam Thomas, Joe Vaughan, Tom Evans, Iwan Matthews, Marc Griffiths. Subs; Kieran Evans, Connor Lee, Calum Vaughan, James Burgess
Denbigh Town FC
Craig Vernon, Stuart Vernon, Bailey Jackson, Tony Davies (Capt), Curtis Langton, Pat Hinchcliffe, Sam Downey , Scott McHarrie, Lewis Sirrell, Mark Roberts, Kristian Pierce: Subs – Sam Jones, Jake Walker, Dan Lloyd, Miles Todd, Allieu Sheriff
Attendance – 84