AFTER four memorable matches in Europe, Haverfordwest County opened their JD Cymru Premier campaign with a goalless draw against Pontypridd at the Ogi Bridge Meadow.

Keeper Zac Jones, who had played a key role against both Shkendija and B36 Torshavn, again made some fine saves in a match that could so easily have gone either way.

An excellent crowd of 563 welcomed the Bluebirds home and with chances at both ends, manager Tony Pennock was pleased to get their first points on the board this season.

"I thought it was pretty even, both teams had chances, Zac's made a couple of good saves, and their keeper has made a couple of good saves," said the Bluebirds boss.

"We knew it would be a tough game, because Pontypridd are a very good side, but it's a clean sheet, and if you keep clean sheets you always have a chance of winning games.

"I was a bit concerned about how the boys would react after all the travelling and the games we've played in Europe, but they stood up to the challenge and I'm pleased.

"Pontypridd had the better of us last season, they beat us twice and they were the last team to beat us in the league, so we were determined not to let that happen tonight.

"On another night they might have nicked it, or we might have nicked it, but I'll take a 0-0 and we'll move on to Penybont next week and try to give a good account of ourselves."

In the absence of injured Dylan Rees and Jazz Richards, Luke Tabone took the captain's armband whilst making his league debut along with Kai Whitmore and Tyrese Owen.

An early chance fell to Owen but he failed to get his shot away following a free kick, and when Jack Wilson’s long throw was flicked on by Lee Jenkins, Ben Fawcett fired over.

Just before the half-hour, New Zealand stopper Jones made an superb diving save to tip over Owain Jones' curling effort when it seemed destined for the top right corner.

Keeper Jones also tipped over a looping header as the teams headed into the break level, and after the restart he pushed a close range effort by Owain Jones around the post.

Striker Martell Taylor-Crossdale came on around the hour to replace Harri John and make his league debut for the club, and it was the Bluebirds who finished the stronger side.

Jenkins forced a decent save when got on the end of Wilson’s long throw to direct a header goalwards, and Taylor-Crossdale also saw an effort pushed away to safety.

In the end, the Bluebirds settled for a point, and they will look to build on a determined effort when they travel to Bridgend to take on Penybont on Friday, August 18.

HAVERFORDWEST: Jones, Wilson, Jenkins, Tabone (C), Borg, Abbruzzese, Owen, Whitmore, H. John (Taylor-Crossdale 65′), Hawkins, Fawcett Substitutes not used: Knott, Humphreys, Uddin, Davies, Woodhouse, D. John

Yellow card: Whitmore 90+3′

PONTYPRIDD: Ratcliffe, Davies, Williams-Margetson, Knott, Williams, Shephard, Ahmun, Wright, Jones, Pritchard, Green (C). Substitutes not used: Morris, Vaughan, Jackson

Yellow cards: Shephard 35′, Green 64′

Attendance: 563.