By Matthew Burgess
Newtown 2, Bala Town 3
It’s hard to deny that it’s been an underwhelming season for Bala Town, particularly in the second-half of their campaign where until yesterday they had managed just a single victory in Phase 2.
Mike Hayes’ second-half winner coupled with a Chris Venables brace might just be the platform the Lakesiders so desperately need to launch their Welsh Premier League play-off campaign.
Bala have not been the competitive outfit that we’ve come to expect in recent campaigns and this season the club are at real risk of missing out on European qualification for the first time in five seasons – a scenario which could make a significant impact on the club’s budget moving forward.
With the automatic European qualifying slots all locked up, the play-offs are the Lakesiders’ only available route.
Having overcome Newtown, the side they are quite likely to face in their play-off semi-final, Colin Caton will be hoping his side can maintain their form and deliver another winning performance in their final league game against Caernarfon Town next Saturday.
A follow-up win over the Cofis would be the perfect way for Bala Town to sign a frustrating season and take some momentum in the play-offs. Don’t rule out the Lakesiders just yet.
Newtown AFC 2 Steve Leslie 23′ Nick Rushton 29′
Bala Town 3 Chris Venables 5′ 39′ Mike Hayes 75′
- Dave Jones, 3. Callum Roberts, 5. Kieran Mills-Evans, 6. Jay Denny, 7. Neil Mitchell (18. George Hughes 77′), 8. Nick Rushton, 11. Joe Kenton (32. Porya Ahmadi 83′), 10. Steve Leslie (9. Luke Boundford 77′), 19. T.Craig Williams, 23. Alex Fletcher, 26. Sam Barnes Subs not used: 13. Jack Perry (gk), 17. Sam Phillips, 25. Will Evans
Red Cards: None
Yellow Cards: Rushton 21′ Kenton 59′ Leslie 63′
- Keighan Jones, 2. Andrew Burns, 3. Sean Smith, 4. Stuart Jones, 6. Anthony Miley, 8. Nathan Burke, 23. Christian Seargeant, 11. Kieran Smith, 77. Henry Jones (12. Evan Horwood 89′), 25. Chris Venables, 9. Mike Hayes (10. Ian Sheridan 90′) Subs not used: 16. Ryan Valentine, 20. Joe Edwards
Red Cards: None
Yellow Cards: None
Referee: Gavin Townsend