JOY AND DESPAIR IN RAIN FOR TOM
LITTLE can match the thrill of scoring your first professional goal.
And when that goal is a thunderous half-volley into the top corner – the joy is even more unbridled.
But what if the game is abandoned and it’s as if the goal never even happened? That’s the reality Tom Owen-Evans, 19, had to face.
The Newport County midfielder – playing just his 22nd league game for the club against Morecambe last weekend – went from the elation of giving the Exiles a 1-0 lead to disbelief when referee Brendan Malone called it off at half-time because of a waterlogged pitch.
He is still trying to wrap his head round it, but for once the rough humour of the dressing room was kept to a minimum.
“A few of them were bantering me initially because they didn’t realise it was my first pro goal, but when it sunk in that I hadn’t scored before, they felt a bit sorry for me,” he said.
“When the ref came in at half-time and said it was off, I was gutted. To score such a nice goal and then for the match to be called off was heartbreaking.
The ‘goal that never was’ is the latest incident in an eventful season for him.
The midfielder was loaned to Gloucester City in September but a muddle over the paperwork meant he faced a race against time up and down the A48.
“Gloucester had Harrogate away on the Saturday and Newport confirmed on the Friday I would be able to go on loan there,” explained Owen-Evans.
“Gloucester were leaving at 3pm for an overnight stay, but I didn’t finish training until 1pm, then had to rush down to Rodney Parade to sign the paperwork.
“I was on my way to Gloucester and got a call saying there was another form I had to fill in!
“I had to go back, fill in the right papers and then race to get on the coach! I made it with a minute to spare, hadn’t even met any of the other players but made my debut next day.”
PAIN GAME: Tom Owen-Evans