Abergavenny Hockey Club Ladies 3 Newcastle Emlyn 3

There is no other way to describe this hockey match played at Abergavenny’s temporary Monmouth Leisure Centre home – it was truly a game of two halves, reports TREVOR SCOTT.

Both sides started brightly and it was clearly going to be an open contest.

The pace was fast and furious with players using the full width of the somewhat slippy pitch.

Newcastle Emlyn open the scoring after 11 minutes but Abergavenny equalised two minutes later with a fine goal by Nelly Daniels.

Abergavenny, led by Nia Johns, then took immediate control and their shape allowed them to dominate midfield.

Lara Botting made a significant contribution both in attack and defence.

Following prolonged attacks down both flanks Kim Cashmore beat the young Newcastle goalkeeper, Lois Pennant, to put the home side two – one ahead after twenty minutes.

Not to be outdone, Bryony Gittins added another classy goal three minutes later.

Not surprisingly the match entered a calmer period with neither side looking like scoring and the first half ended with the score at 3 - 1 to Abergavenny who must have felt that a win had been achieved.

Newcastle Emlyn regrouped for the second period of play and were clearly not going to accept defeat.

Attacks rained down on the Abergavenny circle and after seven minutes the visitors scored.

Inexplicably Abergavenny lost their first half shape and surrendered the midfield which they had dominated earlier.

Abergavenny were tiring, having no substitutes, and it looked increasingly likely that Newcastle would score again.

The equalising goal came from a counter attack ten minutes from the end with a break away creating a two on one situation for goalkeeper Sharon Phillips who lost out to the skillful Newcastle Emlyn forward.

A draw was probably a fair result in the end but it was Newcastle Emlyn who went home the happier side.

Lara Botting was Abergavenny Player of the Match.

AHC Ladies 1st Team: Sharon Phillips, Nia Johns, Beth Cook, Annabel Mills, Elinor Evans, Lauren Stockley, Kim Cashmore, Lara Botting, Nelly Daniels, Charlie Haydock, Bryony Gittins.

Meanwhile, Abergavenny’s men lost out 3-2 after a long trip to face Aberystwyth University, denied by the post and some great saves by the home goalkeeper.