Having been asked a question last week on the complexity of the Welsh Women’s football pyramid- Reporter Gwynfor Edwards went in search of a lower tier match this weekend, as a point of reference as much as anything else, Pontarddulais Ladies v Haverfordwest County Ladies in the beautiful Coed Bach Park set the scene for an absolute peach of a game.
As is now standard when I’m covering matches (definitely jinxed myself there) the sun was absolutely glorious- the wind however, utterly brutal- as both squads arrive at the changing rooms an hour before kick off.
The pre match routines then follow, both sides running through technical warm ups, and cardio lung busters to stave off injury in the bitterest of chills.
The first half was as cagey as it gets, big tackles, both side having chances – and so many offsides that I ran out of fingers and toes.
As half time drew in, understandably Haverfordwest felt a little gutted after having the more prominent of chances- still, unless you take them – in this game you get punished….
The second half began with the home side looking full of it with a clear weapon up front in the form of Jenny Thomas, who’s class on the ball made her one of the stand out figures on the park – as she drifted in and out, constantly drawing the attention of more than one County defender – waiting patiently for her opportunity.
All she needed was half a second- a quick turn, through on goal and bang! Rifled into the bottom corner with a superb strike of the ball.
County regrouped and powered on – throwing numbers forward, their number 16 was pulling all the strings for them as they looked to get back into it.
As we all know, if you throw numbers forward, you’re taking a risk, the outstanding Thomas breaks through again, this time with the cheekiest of lobs from 25 yards – sending the 30 or so home support into raptures.
The nerves then set in for the home team- could this be their first win of the season? Everyone back behind the ball – county continued to throw it all at them, and had their fair share of chances too.
A huge sigh of relief followed for the home side – as the final whistle blew – 2-0 and off the foot of the table.
An absolute belter for the neutral to watch, and the class shown by the home team’s driving force/ captain/ mentor Jenny Thomas was probably the only difference between the two sides.
A massive thanks to both sides for making my job easier.
If you want to treat yourself (and I highly recommend you do) to a WWWGL fixture then head to http://m.wwwgl.org.uk and pick out a treat.