Mike Chedgy &
Saturday 22nd October 2016
Evo-Stik Southern Premier League
Frome Town 2 Merthyr Town 2
Frome Scorers: Davies (45+1), Jefferies (47)
Merthyr Scorers: Wright (67), Tancock (84)
Star Man: Jon Davies
Entertainment Value: 4/5
Two excellent goals just before and just after half time from Jon Davies and Darren Jefferies set
Frome up with a healthy 2-0 lead, but 5th placed Merthyr then went for broke, pulled it back to 2-2
and by the end of the match the Frome fans were pleased to hear the final whistle.
The side showed changes from Saturday, with Connor Roberts, Aiden Kirby and Corby Moore
unavailable, and George Miller missed his first start of the season as he took his place on the
bench, but the good news is that Sam Teale, Jordan Walker and Mike Bryant all took their places on
the bench as they returned from long term injuries.
On a perfect still night and on an excellent pitch, the match kicked off and soon developed into a
fast even encounter with the first chance of the night falling to Merthy as Josh Yerworth cut in from
the left wing and produced a shot that looked to be going in until Marcus Mapstone cleared it off
the line into the hands of Kyle Phillips.
As the match progressed, despite both sides playing excellent passing football, neither side could
manage to find a clear cut opportunity, though Frome were probably the more pro-active side with
numerous moves on both wings,but they always seemed to attract the attention of the linesman’s
offside flag and come to a shuddering halt.
After Phillips had saved well at the far post from Ian Taylor in the 41st, it looked like the first half
would remain goalless, but in the 1st minute of stoppage time, Frome took the lead as a crisp
interchange of passes set Darren Jefferies free on a great run into the Merthyr penalty area, and as
he got the dead ball line, he pulled the ball back for Kris MIller to hit a shot that was blocked, but
the ricochet went to Jon Davies who hammered the ball high into the roof of the net to give Frome
a 1-0 lead at half time.
Jordan Walker replaced Dan Cleverley at half time due to injury, and Frome doubled their lead in
the 2nd minute of the second half as Jefferies went on a mazy run, then passed to Davies who
produced a delightful chipped ball into the path of Jefferies who carried on his run and produced a
great shot across the face of the goal and into the far corner to give Frome a two goal cushion.
Merthyr immediately reacted to the reverse by making three substitutions, with one being Rhys
Baggridge who had played numerous times for Frome, and the changes started to make an effect as
Merthyr stepped up the pace and intensity of the midfield battles as they went for goal.
The pressure paid off in the 67th as a Merthyr right wing corner was hit into the near post and as it
was partially cleared, Jarred Wright latched onto the ball and drilled it low into the far corner
through a crowd of players to make it 2-1 to Frome.
Merthyr now stepped fully into the drivers seat as they went for the equaliser with Taylor starting
to cause problems on their left wing every time he went forward, and after a 72nd minute attack
had been thwarted by Phillips, Baggridge had a chance of a volley but shot well over the Frome bar
to the delight of the home fans.
Josh Jeffries substituted Mitchell Page with Sam Teale, who played as a right sided defender to try
and counter the Merthyr left wing threat, and as Jefferies broke for Frome to win a corner in the
83rd it looked as if the tactic was working, but Merthyr broke quickly from the corner and as
Phillips came out of his area to head clear a bouncing ball, he only managed to find Scott Tancock
who had time to control the ball and hit a great 35 yard lob over the retreating keeper and
Mapstone on the Frome line for a well taken equaliser.
The last ten minutes or so of the match saw continuous, frantic pressure from Merthyr, but
somehow the Frome defence held out and the home crowd were pleased to hear the final whistle.
Jon Davies was awarded the H&B Tyres Man of the Match award by match sponsors Frome
Scaffolding Ltd, and it was a good choice, with him scoring the first, being involved in the second
and generally causing Merthyr problems for most of the match.