Cofis kick start cup glory drive
Lex on end of five-goal blast
CAERNARFON Town kicked off their quest for Welsh Cup glory with a resounding 5-1 victory over a spirited Lex Glyndwr side at a rain– soaked Oval.
This same competition gave the Canaries plenty to cheer last season as the side reached the semi-final stage before bowing out to Welsh Premier League side Bala Town and Iwan Williams and his players are desperate to go even further this time around.
Their first opponents were Lex, who ply their trade in the Welsh National League under player manager Ricky Evans.
However, Caernarfon are on a fine run of form and started confidently, taking control of the game immediately and pushing their opponents back into their own half.
It was evident from the opening skirmishes that Lex were a tight, solid outfit and their backline was well marshalled by centre halves Alex Huxley and Chris Hughes. Despite this, the hosts still managed to create space in and around their penalty area, and both Gareth Evans and Darren Thomas failed to make the most of good opportunities early on, whilst Jamie Breese attempted an audacious lob that flew inches wide of the upright with stopper Tom Belton still frantically back-pedalling.
Lex had provided little by way of goal threat up but they broke upfield in the 36th minute and made the most of their first opportunity of the match when Evans deftly crossed the ball for Matthew Harrison to head past Alex Ramsay.
Despite this unexpected setback there was no gloom around the Oval and the home side went about getting back on level terms with immediate effect, seeing claims for a penalty waved away after Danny Brookwell’s run was stopped inside the area, referee Nick Pratt opting for a free kick on the edge of the box instead. However, it mattered little as Craig’s free kick defelected off Chris Hughes and nestle in the back of the net.
Town were buoyant and went ahead just before the break as a well-worked free kick found defender Clive Williams six yards out and he took full advantage with a low strike.
Gareth Evans went close to adding a third for the Cofis early in the second period, but the hosts did not have to wait long to increase their lead as substitute Jay Gibbs collected the ball and slotted home from the edge of the area, the classy midfielder having only just joined the action after coming off the bench.
Craig’s measured right-foot shot struck the woodwork on the hour mark before Dominic Doherty enjoyed a rare sight of the home side’s goal late on. But Town extended their advantage through in-form striker Jamie Breese before the final whistle.
Breese had been instrumental in most of Caernarfon’s best moves all and it was only fitting that his excellent work was rewarded when he completed a late brace, the first coming when he latched onto a Thomas ball in the box and then, in the final minute, getting on the end of a fine Thomas cross.
● Goalscorers Jay Gibbs and Jamie Breese celebrate Welsh Cup progress while (inset) Danny Brookwell turns the Lex defence