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Merthyr Town v Basingstoke Town

6 January 2024

Merthyr Town v Basingstoke Town

Kick Off:




Merthyr Town v Basingstoke Town

Merthyr Town FC, Penydarren Park, Merthyr Tydfil, CF47 8RF

Match Report:

Supporters of both sides were provided with value for money in an entertaining encounter. It was also a game of five distinct parts. The first half provided something that you don’t see very often when three separate penalties were awarded, all of which were converted. The final two parts were excellent individual goals both scored by Lewys Twamley.

So how did everything unfold? The first two penalties were converted in the opening 30 minutes. Ricardo Rees was fouled twice and scored on both occasions. After 20 minutes Rees twisted and turned in the penalty area causing enough confusion in the head of his marker to commit the foul. The penalty was dispatched without any significant movement from Paul Strudley, the Basingstoke ‘keeper. For the second penalty ten minute later, Rees raced into the area and was brought down by the desperate sliding tackle of Strudley. This gave the Martyrs clear water with a two goal lead.

Four minutes before half time a mistake from Strudley gave the ball directly to Twamley 35-yards from goal. He ran with the ball unopposed and kept his composure to easily score from 10 yards. His selection to replace the injured Olly Mehew would be more than justified with his second goal of the afternoon early in the second half.

Meanwhile, in the 7 minutes of added time a Basingstoke corner arrived in a crowded penalty area and although Will Fuller seemed to be pushed to the ground, a subsequent foul by a Merthyr defender gave the opportunity for the referee to award another penalty to Basingstoke. Despite Fuller going the right way and getting something on the ball from Brad Wilson’s spot kick it squeezed into the net.

With a disappointing end to the half the momentum built by the Martyrs was slightly deflated, but this didn’t last for very long as in the 49th minute Twamley scored a goal of pure genius. Collecting the ball in his own half over 65 yards from goal he ran at pace over the halfway line near the right hand touchline and eventually with two defenders tracking either side of him, used his pace to glide through a tiny gap that they provided before cutting inside to the penalty area. As if that piece of magic wasn’t stunning enough, he then proceeded to manoeuvrer himself towards the penalty spot before curling a left foot effort inside the post.

This effectively ended the game as a contest and a raft of substitutions disrupted the flow of the home side as the match became scrappy. Basingstoke were denied a second goal by a last ditch tackle when the visitors broke free creating a two-on-one situation.

At the final whistle the buoyant mood of the fans had been lifted by the extremely positive result that saw the Martyrs climb one place above Gosport to third.

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