In the first of a triple header, Port Talbot Town picked up a much needed win against Welsh league division two side Aberbargoed Buds.
It was the home side that had the first of the chances in at goal when Keane Watts broke down the wing. Watts beat his man and crossed to Morgan Thomas which just evaded his reach. Aberbargoed immediately replied when Elliot Williams was put in on goal. The long ball over the top beat the PTT high line and forced James Harris in to a strong save in a one on one situation.
The blues were looking to test in the air once more when Jordan Pike’s corner kick was aimed towards Watts at the back post. Watts leaped above his man to force visiting keeper Cael Jones to make a good save. The ball bobbled about in the six yard area before a defensive clearance ended any imminent danger for the Buds.
The pressure began to increase on the away side when Dylan Thomas picked up the ball in the area. One nutmeg later, a chipped cross towards the centre of the goal saw the keeper and Jake Hammond collide as he challenged for the ball resulting in a brief stop of play so the Englishman could get treated.
After a few frantic opening minutes the game began to settle in to a slower pace with both sides wasting chances at either end before Watts started to cause problems again on the half hour mark. A defensive error gifted Watts an opportunity on the edge of the area but unfortunately he was unable to capitalise on this occasion.
Blake Morgan began to cause problems as well for the Aberbargoed defence. Morgan wins a header and sets up Morgan Thomas whose half volley is scuffed and rolls wide of the mark.
Charlie Loss attempted a volley of his own up the other end with similar results but if anything, spurred his side on to press a bit higher and get more creative in this game. Something Ray would be proud of.
Blake Morgan continued to win many aerial challenges and this time set up Jake Hammond with the effort being saved well by Jones in goals. Aberbargoed went up the other end and looked good in the final third of the pitch. Matthew Jones’ effort at goal was deflected by Charlie Fripp but was once again saved well by Harris to force a corner. Elliot Williams headed at goal and once again forced Harris in to action making two smart saves to keep the scores level.
An immediate counter from Harris’ clearance put Watts in again. Blake Morgan had once last shot towards goal before the referee called for half time with the scores tied at nil.
The Buds got the second half off to an excellent start. Owen Davies’ slight nick of the ball in the area probably prevented the away side taking the lead. How Aberbargoed could have done with that goal though as it was PTT breaking the deadlock minutes later. Jordan Pike’s corner once again finding range and this time Morgan Thomas was at the front post to header home and put the blues one goal up.
Traffic was going one way for the majority of play after this goal as the home side looked to double their lead. Dylan Thomas threaded the ball through in midfield to Blake Morgan with the onrushing goalkeeper being the only difference in a goal for the centre forward.
Fripp and Watts linked up well at the top end of the field for PTT with a last ditch defensive challenge stopping any effort in on goal. There was even time for another trademark Owen Davies overhead kick attempt at goal, this time the ball going wide.
With the game nearly reaching its conclusion, Port Talbot Town picked up a second goal with 10 minutes of the game to spare. Substitute, Patrick Finneral used his pace to beat the Buds full back and played a ball across the box. Blake Morgan laid it off to Dylan Thomas who struck towards goal and it was Keane Watts who got the final touch to tap home from close range.
Aberbargoed had further chances late on, notably from Kane Gifford when a cross could have been the better option but it was academic at this point as the referee blew for full time minutes later.
Port Talbot Town advanced in to the quarter finals of the Nathaniel Car Sales Welsh league cup and thoroughly deserved the win on the day.
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Featured Image: Russell Gwilym Morris