Welsh League Division 1:
Haverfordwest County 2
Cwmamman United 1

TWO well-struck second-half finishes were enough to clinch the three points in a rather scrappy game which never really got the cold out of its bones, writes Robert Nisbet.

The Bluebirds did in fact start brightly, having a good first quarter of an hour, passing cleverly across and into the Cwmamman penalty area with Dan Williams and Declan Carroll looking particularly dangerous. 

Williams really threatened in the 9th minute with a brilliant run from the halfway line. But there were hardly any shots on goal to show for this pressure, apart from one angled shot from Kristian Speake which keeper Chris Curtis was able to pluck away from the angle of bar and post. 

Then, from the 15-minute mark, United began to create their own pressure. Their tactics were an odd mix, since they seemed to want to play a close-ball game in defence but to rely on the long ball and the upfield rush in attack. 

Right back Jordan Vickers went on a series of big runs from his own half, and attackers Tom Blackburn and Chris Allen were running strongly and directly.

In the 21st minute Blackburn’s shot crashed back off a post and ex-Bluebird Ashley Curtis should really have done better with the rebound.

In the 30th minute Carroll sent in a real sizzler of a shot, but straight at Curtis. The first half ended as a nil-nil stalemate.

But the mood was lifted by two Bluebirds’ goals, the first in the 55th minute when Speake and Dan Williams set up a neat exchange of passes out on the left before slipping the ball inside to Carroll whose 25-yard shot thundered in leaving Curtis well-beaten.

Fifteen minutes later Williams curled in a clever free kick which had the Cwmamman defence in trouble and allowed Speake to react first and crash in from close range. 

That looked to have settled the matter but Cwmamman who, whatever else, never lacked heart, came back. They had earlier wasted both a well-situated free kick and a corner by putting them straight out of play, but in the 74th minute a free kick into the box gave sub Colin Harris the chance to hammer in a six yarder. 

The Blues had an awkward 15 minutes to weather and had to resort to playing a great deal towards the corner flags, but were able to graft out the result. This was not the prettiest of games but the three points leave them right on Llanelli’s heels.

Haverfordwest County: Conah McFenton, Matthew Broome, Spencer Williams, Sean Pemberton (Captain), Tim Hicks, Ricky Watts, Kristian Speake, Declan Carroll, Joe Leahy, Dan Williams, Steffan Williams. Subs: Alaric Jones, Leon Luby, Nicky Palmer, Nick Jones (GK).