LLANELLI TOWN 1
A LITTLE 'ring rusty' after a series of postponements due to the bad weather, Rhoose's Macwhirter Welsh League soccer side were back in action on Saturday.
Eager to boost their Third Division spot in this difficult away match, Rhoose showed exactly the right attitude and battled through a gale force wind and driving rain to gain three well-earned points.
The West Wales club, who were playing in the Welsh Premiership just last season and had qualified for Europe in recent years, took an early lead when top scorer Jordan Fellows seized on some sloppy defending.
Although the goal was against the elements, Rhoose stuck to their task and equalised midway through the first half following a 30 yard ‘screamer’ into the top corner from midfield dynamo Richard Yarr.
Rhoose continued to press, particularly down the left hand side, and went close on numerous occasions through Jacob Daly and Nicky Davison, but it remained 1-1 at half-time.
Playing against the elements in the second half seemed to suit Rhoose and, with the ball ‘holding up,’ they generally controlled the game with more accurate passing and possession retention.
With the home team anxious to push on with the strong wind at their backs, this left some gaps in midfield and in defence and Rhoose took full advantage to score on the break in the 70th minute. Following great work by Yarr, who battled to win the ball in midfield and then provided an inch-perfect pass, the Vale side’s top marksman, Drew Fahiya, found himself in a ‘one-on-one’ with Llanelli 'keeper Wyn Walters and calmly slotted the ball home.
The goal seemed to galvanise the away side and they saw out the game the stronger - and, indeed, had numerous chances to put the game beyond doubt. The best chance fell to Daly, whose thumping 20-yard drive produced an unbelievable save from Walters who dived to his right to beat away what seemed a certain goal.
The Vale side held out to the great satisfaction of team boss Paul Giles who remarked: "A different Rhoose side turned up this week - one that wanted to put a shift in, get behind the ball when required and then break with pace and purpose.
"I’m really proud that my players can come to a place like this, to a top-class outfit in every respect, and not only come away with a win, but dominate the latter stages as we did.
"I just hope, with two tough away games, we can push on from here. After this result, we’ll certainly be looking to get something from those games."
Following those two games at Llanwern and Risca United respectively, Rhoose return to Jenner Park on February 22 when they entertain Cwmaman Institute.
Rhoose: Damian Lack, Craig Green, Oliver Dalton, Matthew Philips, Chris Hynam, Drew Fahiya, Liam Jones, Richard Yarr, Jacob Daly, Nicky Davison, Joseph Hinds, Gareth Powner, Sion Anstee and Mike Lewis.