Welsh League, Division One
Caldicot Town 2
Haverfordwest County 3
AFTER a fine first half, the Bluebirds were made to fight all the way for the win against stubborn opposition and on a very uneven surface.
As the first half got going, exchanges went from end to end, but the Bluebirds had the better chances. Caldicot keeper Luke Wesson had to make two fine saves, and their full back Ashley Palmer picked up a yellow card after two fouls in two minutes. The red-clad Bluebirds eventually took the lead in the 30th minute when Sean Pemberton headed in from a corner.
Ash Palmer had to clear off his line and the visitors won a succession of corners. In the 44th minute Caldicot’s Alex Jarman collected a yellow for a high tackle.
The visitors doubled their lead in the 50th minute when Nicky Palmer, with only a handful of previous goals in hundreds of Welsh Premier and Welsh League appearances, struck a stinging volley. But in the 63rd minute Caldicot pulled one back when James Gwilt seemed to stumble when fielding a back pass and the ball crept into the net.
Ashley Bevan went close to settling matters in the 70th minute when his shot crashed back off the post, but at the other end, Gwilt made a stunning save to keep the lead intact. Then, in the 82nd minute, the Bluebirds seemed to have clinched the game when Lee Hudgell got the third.
Caldicot had just time for one last spirited fight-back. The long throws of Ash Palmer had threatened all afternoon and from one of them Wallis headed over. In the 88th minute Gwilt gathered a cross from Jarman but appeared to carry it over the line.
This Saturday, the Bluebirds have home advantage against Risca United, and kick off is at 2.30pm.
Haverfordwest County: James Gwilt, Ricky Watts, Kristian Speake, Sean Pemberton Jamie Evans, Kieran O’Brien (Rhys Dalling 75) Nicky Palmer, Greg Walters, Ashley Bevan, Steffan Davies, Lee Hudgell. Subs not used: Steffan Williams, Chris O‘Sullivan, Leon Luby.