Match Report: Hartley Wintney v Merthyr Town
Post by KOB - 16-01-2022, 12:10
Hartley Wintney v Merthyr Town, Pitching In Southern League Premier Division South. Saturday 15th January 2022
Report by David Graham
Hartley Wintney came out on top in a match between two relegation threatened clubs, thanks to a spectacular second-half goal from Kofi Halliday.
The match struggled to produce much incident in the opening half, and the considerable number of stoppages by referee Jonathan Bolland meant little fluency in play. Throughout the first-half neither goalkeeper was called into action.
On 24 minutes the Row finally put together a decent move down the right. Jordan Edwards' cross had the Martyrs defence just managing to scramble clear.
Approaching half time, an Edwards corner for the Row found striker Dan Fitchett, who shot over the bar.
The Martyrs responded and a right wing cross from Adam Davies found Kieran Evans, whose low shot went across the face of the goal.
HALF TIME : HARTLEY WINTNEY 0 MERTHYR TOWN 0
On 51 minutes the Row were awarded a free-kick some 25 yards out. Edwards stepped up and his delicately flighted shot beat the wall and keeper Jaimie Cogman's fingertips, but came back off the crossbar.
Merthyr responded and had a decent spell of pressure. This culminated on 55 minutes when Lewis Powell set up Evans, whose powerful effort from the edge of the area skimmed the bar.
Hartley Wintney responded and got the breakthrough on 61 minutes. A ball to the left found KOFI HALLIDAY who, with defenders ahead of him, sent in a delightful lob from just outside the corner of the box, over Jaimie Cogman in the Merthyr goal and into the net. (1-0)
In a game where a win would be so precious to either side, Merthyr strove hard to get back into the match but were unable to test Luke Williams in the Row goal. At the other end, a good interchange between Ryan Case and Edwards on 68 minutes created a chance for the latter, and the midfielder was unlucky to see his shot blocked.
Hartley continued to have an edge and on 77 minutes a free-kick from Edwards found its way to Josh Webb, who fired powerfully over the crossbar.
The last effort of the match came on 82 minutes. Good interplay down the right gave Edwards a chance and he was unlucky to see his effort hit the outside of the post.
FULL TIME: HARTLEY WINTNEY 1 MERTHYR TOWN 0
An important win for Hartley Wintney, which left supporters feeling they had greatly improved their chances of avoiding the drop in the relegation scrap. Results elsewhere has seen them rise one place to 18th of the 22 teams in the Premier South. [D Graham]
HARTLEY WINTNEY: Luke Williams, Ryan Case, Reece Wylie, Matt Drage, Harry Taylor, Josh Webb, Adam Allen, Kofi Halliday, Sam Argent (c), Dan Fitchett, Jordan Edwards.
Subs: Aaron Goode, Jake Rumble, Toby Raggett (on for Adam Allen), Lucias Vine (on for Dan Fitchett)
MERTHYR TOWN: Jaimie Cogman, Adam Davies, James Parry, Joe Woodiwiss, Matthew Harris, Joshua Allen, Frazer Thomas, Morgan Clarke, Lewis Powell, Keyon Refell, Kieran Evans
Subs: Kerry Morgan, Dan Barnard (on), Curtos Jemmett-Hutson (on), Tom Hillman (on), Eli Phipps
HARTLEY MAN OF THE MATCH: Reece Wylie
David spoke with Hartley Wintney manager, Anthony Millerick, after the game.
"I felt we met all our objectives. The main one, of course, was to get the win, and we are delighted to add the points. As for the game itself, the pitch did not make it easy for fluent play. It's still heavy going after the recent weather.
"I felt the whole team worked exceptionally hard and they deserve credit. A loss would have left us in a worse place, but with the win and results elsewhere, our position has improved considerably."
Millers continued, "We used a different system today for this match and we emphasised to the players they should play without fear. It is very pleasing to get a clean sheet, and Luke Williams in goal barely had a shot to save. We hope this win will give us confidence for the forthcoming games."