Here's your first TNS line-up of 2018. Just the one change made, enforced by Robbie Parry's sending off. Aeron Edwards has come in to replace him. Wes Fletcher also returns to the squad with a place on the bench. #JDWPL pic.twitter.com/IhEcIuBsvY
— The New Saints FC (@tnsfc) January 2, 2018
Goals: Marriott (55), Brobbel (56), Fletcher (90+1)
Substitutions: Fletcher for Draper (81), Pryce for Marriott (82), Darlington for Edwards (84)
Bala Town 0 The New Saints of Oswestry Town 3
Having suffered defeats by more than one goal just twice domestically so far this season – Bangor City 5-2 and Newton AFC 4-2 – on both occasions the next fixture was against Bala Town. A tough challenge following the opening day reversal against the Citizens, nevertheless after a goalless first half TNS ran out 3-0 winners in the end.
The groundhog day effect continued for the first game of 2018, with no goals in the first period at Maes Tegid followed by three in the second forty five, as once more the final scoreline read 3-0 to The New Saints.
In a fixture that was originally postponed due to the four inches of snow that covered the pitch, this time round the weather was again dominating the conversation. With extremely wet and windy conditions, the first half especially proved to be very difficult for both sides.
Brobbel’s run down the left in the opening minutes saw the ball in cleared by Horwood, as the visitors tried to stamp their authority on the game. Chances proved to be few and far between though, as without a doubt, mother nature proved to be the dominant factor.
The best chances of the half came later on with a ball in from Marriott down the left, in the 43rd minute, resulting in first of all the bar denying TNS the lead, followed by the resultant rebound blasted over, as Draper and Hudson respectively were in the thick of the action.
Just one minute later, it was Harrison’s turn to be involved as he tipped the ball over for a corner. In the dying seconds of normal time, Greg Draper had the best chance of the half, as a ball from Routledge looked to be a certain goal. However, a tremendous interception from Stuart Jones denied the JD Welsh Premier League’s leading goalscorer from increasing his tally.
With the second half just ten minutes old though the deadlock was finally broken, as a shot from Brobbel deflected off Marriott on the way through, as it ended up in the back of the net.
Just one minute later, this time the ex-Middlesbrough man got his name on the scoresheet direct from a free-kick. Although faced by a formidable wall, Brobbel executed his shot perfectly. To Morris’ left, the ball was beyond his reach as the reigning JD WPL champions doubled their lead.
The Lakesiders’ keeper pulled off a great save from the in-form Brobbel in the 74th minute, as he pushed behind for a corner.
The New Saints continued to create chances, with a Hudson header hitting the outside roof of the net among the opportunities. Following his wonder-strike on Boxing Day at Latham Park, the towering centre half played with the confidence that those type of goals bring.
It was in added time though that the visitors got their third, as a long ball played through bounced off the head of unaware Jamie Mullan, caught out by the wind as the winger raced through. Dropping to substitute Wes Fletcher, he put the ball away to wrap up a comfortable victory for TNS.
— James Steer (@steery1991) January 2, 2018
Photograph gallery from the game Credit: Brian Jones
|January 2, 2018||7:45 pm||Welsh Premier League||2017 - 2018|
|1 Maes Tegid, Bala LL23 7BF, UK|
|The New Saints FC||3|