FOR their penultimate away JD Cymru South fixture of the season, Abergavenny took their recent good form to the Port Talbot area and, in particular, the wooded valley which is the home to Goytre United, reports NIGEL JEWELL.

There had been recent rain at Glenhafod Park resulting in a slick and tricky surface.

With Owen Taylor out injured and Corey Paton dropping to the bench, back into the starting line up came Rhys Thomas after suspension and young Rhys Schwank started up front.

The team was Connor Christie, George Clarke, Jac Evans (c), Drew Heffernan, Frank Pemberton, Nathan Davies, Ben Watkins, Rhys Tandy, Ryan Lewis-Hillier, Rhys Thomas, Rhys Schwank.

Substitutes were Gareth Wesson, Luke Williams, Corey Paton, Curtis Methven, Alex Holmes and Iwan Hockings-Lewis.

There was early action in both halves of the pitch but not in the goalmouths.

It took until the 25th minute before a good move involving Jac Evans and Drew Heffernan ended with the ball being pulled across the penalty area, but no one was able to take advantage and soon after Evans drilled a shot just past the far post.

With Town seemingly in control at this point, they were caught with a sucker punch in the 43rd minute when a misplaced pass was intercepted by Jordan Edwards who ran through to score with a low shot.

Rhys Thomas then brought a flying one-handed save from the home custodian Sam Morton.

It was a temporary reprieve for Morton, however, as from the resultant corner the ball fell for Ryan Lewis-Hillier to equalise from close range.

There was still time for Connor Christie to make a superb save before referee Thomas Bevan blew his whistle for half-time.

The travelling support expected the Pennies to come out all guns blazing in the second half but it was not to be.

George Clarke put in a good tackle to stop a promising Goytre attack before Town lost the ball in midfield in the 61st minute and Josh Jones ran onto a through ball, stepped back inside Connor Christie and finished into the corner of the net despite two despairing defenders trying to stop the goal.

Abergavenny huffed and puffed without the influentual Owen Taylor but were unable to get a grip of the midfield and create any meaningful goalscoring chances.

Goytre were even able to play the last 20 minutes with ten players after Liam Hutchinson received his second yellow card of the match.

After playing so well recently, this was a disappointing performance by the team and one that they will want to get out of their systems before they face Llanwit Major at home next Tuesday night (March 21st) and Ynyshir Albions the following Friday evening (March 24).

Manager Nicky Morgan summed up the game by saying: “Very disappointing afternoon for us. I didn’t think there was much between the two teams first half, but we didn’t really come out of the dressing room second half. Goytre just about deserved to win.

“We have a weekend off coming up and hoping the results go in our favour before we head into a double header at home firstly against Llanwit Major and then basement boys Ynyshir.

“We will be looking to bounce back and confirm our place in Cymru South for next season.”

Abergavenny Town 2nds went one down to Croesyceiliog Reserves in FAW Reserve League South East on Saturday when Luke Dyke scored in the 25th minute.

Liam Simmonds set up Jake Heckles to equalise in the 40th minute.

And with the game drifting towards a draw, Croesyceiliog won the match in the 89th minute through a Jay Pelopida goal.

The 2nds next travel to Chepstow Town on Saturday (March 18).