Richards strike seals point against rivals Ferry

By Owain Johns - August 16 2007
Richards strike seals point against rivals Ferry Garden Village have their first point of the season after Wednesday's stalemate against old foes Briton Ferry at Stafford Common. Read on for more info...

GARDEN VILLAGE  1 - 1  BRITON FERRY

MacWhirter Welsh Football League Division 2
Wednesday August 15, 2007

Ashley Richards’ second-half leveller ensured that Garden Village would get some points on the board in a fiery derby contest against Briton Ferry.

The home side had fallen a goal behind early in the second-half but battled well to get themselves back into the game with 20 minutes remaining. Both sides had chances to put the game to bed but in the end had to settle for a point.

Village made three changes to the side that lost at Barry four days earlier with Matthew Martin returning in goal to replace Nicky Pritchard. David Evans replaced Christian Richards at right-back while Jeff Aspell partnered Ashley Richards up-front in the absence of midfielder Paul Bromage; Liam Soroka, who played as an attacker at Barry, dropped back into midfield.

The game started slowly and for much of the first-half play was confined to the centre of the park. Good build up play involving three players ended with Anthony Wright having his shot saved on seven minutes and four minutes later Ashley Richards thought he’d scored from close-range only for his shot to be stopped on the line.

Anthony Wright again and Cameron Hopking both had good chances mid-way through the half and shortly after the half-hour mark Gary Davies directed his header wide of the target after getting on the end of David Rimmer’s free-kick.

A very uneventful first-half dwindled to a close and both sides left the pitch locked at 0-0.

Former Llanelli forward Jeff Aspell, making his full debut for Garden Village, was grounded in the area just three minutes after the re-start but Pembrokeshire referee Adrian Wilson waved play on; both players were challenging for the ball and Ferry’s big centre back looked to have aimed a little push in Aspell’s direction.

The visitors had their best effort of the game so far on 53 minutes when their forward beat the offside trap and charged towards goal and directing his shot past Martin only for David Evans to appear and clear the ball off the line at the last second. Village went straight down the other end and as Jeff Aspell went to pull the trigger from close-range the ball was deflected wide for a corner.

With 10 minutes to go, though, Ferry took the lead. Mark Jones lost possession on the edge of the area and a Ferry player took a touch and struck a fierce shot beyond Martin to make it 1-0.

Gavin Guy came close to levelling the scores mid-way through the half with a good run down the right only to have his shot saved, and on 70 minutes Cameron Hopkins sent his header over the top from six-yards.

The leveller did come less than 60 seconds later; David Rimmer launched the ball downfield which reached Ashley Richards, last seasons top-scorer then rounded ‘keeper Rhys Jones to slot into an empty net to make it 1-1.

Substitute Lee Rastatter and Ashley Wright had chances to grab a winner in normal time, as did Briton Ferry, while deep into injury-time Gary Davies drove his effort well over the top from the edge of the area.

Village: Matthew Martin; David Evans, David Rimmer, Gary Davies, Mark Jones (Sam Brown, 59’); Gavin Guy, Anthony Wright, Liam Soroka, Cameron Hopkins; Jeff Aspell (Lee Rastatter, 59’), Ashley Richards.

Not Used: Nicky Pritchard (GK), Christian Richards.