Merthyr vet­er­ans have to set­tle for hard-fought draw

Cynon Valley - - SPORT -

LLANTRISANT VET­ER­ANS ............................... 2 MERTHYR VET­ER­ANS 2

LLANTRISANT were quickly into their stride in Sun­day’s Over 50s Wales Vet­er­ans League clash at Tonyre­fail.

Huw Tay­lor burst through only to fire over the cross­bar. Then a pow­er­ful run by Paul Jones for Merthyr was halted just out­side the penalty area.

Play swung from end to end on a chopped-up and soggy pitch which did not suit Merthyr’s style of pass­ing.

Merthyr should have scored on 15 min­utes. Keith Wil­liams found Carl Lewis on the left and the ball went to Paul Ot­way alone at the far post with the goal at his mercy. But he sliced his shot wide of the post.

Merthyr were hav­ing most of the pos­ses­sion and looked com­fort­able but were jolted by a Llantrisant counter-at­tack which forced a cor­ner on the right.

An­drew Owen’s drilled-in cross found Tay­lor un­marked on the six yard box to eas­ily head past Terry Collins in the Merthyr goal.

Tay­lor al­most added to the score but was foiled by a fine save by Collins.

Min­utes later Merthyr were de­nied an equaliser. A Keith Wil­liams’ cross from the right was met firmly by the head of Ot­way to give goal­keeper Rob­bie Ryan no chance.

But joy turned to de­spair when the ref­eree harshly ad­judged Ot­way to have im­peded a Llantrisant de­fender.

The sec­ond half fol­lowed the same pat­tern with Merthyr play­ing pos­ses­sion foot­ball, and Llantrisant us­ing long-ball tac­tics util­is­ing the pace of Pepe Mele and Peter Shilton.

Wil­liams and Ot­way went close to scor­ing be­fore an equaliser came mid­way through the half.

A cor­ner from the right was headed by Ot­way to Lewis who fin­ished from the six -yard line.

Llantrisant hit back and a long clear­ance from de­fence found Pepe un­marked in the Merthyr half but his surg­ing run was halted when he was brought down in the penalty area and Owen pow­er­fully drove home the spot­kick.

Merthyr were not to be de­nied and equalised with an­other penalty af­ter Ot­way was brought down. Wil­liams scored by send­ing the ball into the cor­ner of the net.

The away side con­tin­ued to press but a res­o­lute Llantrisant de­fence re­fused to buckle un­der heavy pres­sure. But this was a good point for Merthyr who were miss­ing sev­eral key play­ers.

Con­ti­nen­tal have now won the league ti­tle af­ter beat­ing Swansea 55 2-0. Their team in­clude for­mer Cardiff City and Merthyr Tyd­fil star Roger Gib­bins.

Merthyr are in sev­enth place with two wins, three draws and three losses.

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