Subs: ???, Matty Hughes, ???, ???, Luke Probert
Dai Brown(pic) has scored 3 in 3 since being moved up front for the Reds.
Briton Ferry Llansawel and Penybont played out a thrilling 3-3 draw in Welsh League Division One under the Old Road floodlights on Friday evening in what was a great advert for the Welsh League.
In a game that had everything including six goals, two red cards, a saved penalty and a ninetieth minute equaliser eventually the Reds will feel somewhat disappointed after leading 3-0 with a hour gone.
There were many more positives than negatives for Ferry manager Carl Shaw though in what was a much more spirited performance from the men in Red.
After a difficult start in Tier 2 Shaw opted for a 4-4-2 with midfielders Keiran Williams away and Rory Healey injured Scott Kenyon was given his first start since pre-season after an operation on his wrist. Sam Baker was also preferred at right back with Luke Harris returning to partner Ian Hiller in central defence, Dan Kingdom completed the back four in front of goalkeeper and captain Steve Cann. Matty Harris partnered Kenyon in midfield with Tom Da Silva and Steve Davey providing the width in front of top two Gareth Jones and Dai Brown.
The visitors managed by Rhys Griffiths who have also applied for the Tier 1 license are one of the divisions favourites to fight for promotion but they found themselves outfought and outplayed for the first hour of the game with some of the seasons best football from the Reds seeing them 3-0 up with half hour to play.
Gareth Jones had the first chance to give the Reds after 15 minutes after referee Gavin Townsend adjudged a Penybont defender to have handballed inside the box, however visiting captain Rhys Wilson guessed the right way to save Jones' spot kick.
It was not long though before the hosts made amends when a great move started by Steve Davey on the right saw Dai Brown involved before Scott Kenyon slotted an inch perfect pass to slice through the Penybont defence and find a the perfectly timed run that had been continued from Steve Davey, he made no mistake and slotted the ball under the advancing Wilson for 1-0.
An unsavoury incident marred a great first half performance though with five minutes remaining after Gareth Jones had become involved with Kane Owen near the touchline the forward was irate after it seemed the full back had kicked out at him off the ball, with nothing given by the assistant, seconds later Jones chased a back pass and himself kicked out at defender James Parry in frustration, Parry reacted with a push on Jones and referee Townsend showed both players straight red cards.
An inspiring start to the second half saw the Reds extend their lead after a cross field pass from Da Silva released Davey who showed blistering pace and an inch perfect cross from wide right, this was met by in form forward Dai Brown who nodded past Wilson for 2-0 and a superb counter attack goal.
The lead was extended to three ten minutes later, this time a deep free kick from Matty Harris saw Ian Hillier show excellent endeavour to not only keep in but deliver his cross deep to the other post, this was again met by a determined Brown to nod in much to the delight of the home support.
With the next goal vital credit to the visitors who were in a never say day mood led by talented winger Owain Warlow, his cross from the left on 72 minutes found its way over Cann's head with Dan Kingdom also unable to keep out under pressure from the winger below the crossbar to give the visitors hope.
In fairness the men in blue were now turning up the pressure and starting to ask questions themselves and a delightful move saw Marcus Griffiths pull the deficit back to one goal with ten minutes remaining.
Forward Brown was forced from play after taking a few heavy tackles and in his place saw Ryan Griffiths who was himself returning from a long lay off, the pacey forward had two great chances to kill the game that the Penybont defenders threw themselves at to keep out before he had to limp off with what looked like a reoccurring knee injury, he was replaced by Mark Tancock.
With the onslaught from the visitors the commitment from every home player was evident in defending but the win wasn't to be as another excellent move saw midfielder Kieran Howard dispatch a curling effort past Cann to equalise in the dying moments.
Man of the Match- SCOTT KENYON- A number of excellent performances especially from Steve Davey and Dai Brown, but the midfielder showed why his energy and creation has been missed so much to date with a top midfield display.