Gwent Premier Division Two

Thornwell R&W 2 Mardy 1

Facing fellow unbeaten Gwent Premier Division Two side Thornwell R&W, Mardy were disappointed with a chaotic build-up featuring last-minute player drop-outs and unavailability, which resulted in a first start of the season for coach Huw Llewellyn.

Not surprisingly, they started slowly and keeper James Edwards was forced into a good save early on before in the eighth minute the Chepstow side’s Tobias Prettyjohn was allowed to run unchecked from virtually the halfway line before firing off a shot which took a huge deflection to put the home side in front.

Mardy responded well to the setback, however, and forced three corners in quick succession before Nathan Price shot over under pressure from two defenders and Dan Marfell brought a full-length save from host keeper Lee Morgan.

The visitors then got the equalising goal they deserved after 27 minutes when Dan Palmer did very well to hold off the challenge of several defenders before setting himself up for a left-foot shot which he buried past Morgan.

The visitors started the second half well and created a number of chances from open play and corners, but finishing was poor and Thornwell were getting a foothold in the game from the hour mark by winning a high proportion of second balls and pressurising Mardy’s passing style.

And it paid off for them with 18 minutes to go with Prettyjohn involved again.

The Thornwell playmaker had been prominent throughout and he took a perfectly placed free-kick from the edge of the box for Julian Saunders to head home virtually unchallenged close in.

Mardy then had an escape almost immediately when Thornwell had a goal chalked off for offside and Edwards made a good save at the feet of Owen Badham when clean through.

With time running out, Mardy threw everything at the home side in search of an equaliser with Llewellyn frequently moving up front in what was virtually a five man front line.

A number of frantic goalmouth scrambles ensued to no avail and Morgan made a great save from Ben Jones just before the final whistle to edge a 2-1 win for Thornwell.

Mardy still stay top having win 12 from 13, while R&W have drawn twice.

This Saturday, Mardy take a week off league action with a Gwent FA Amateur Cup game at home to Pontnewynydd, whilst the 2nds travel to Forgeside’s Govilon ground for a Gwent Central Division One game.