Plymouth Parkway 0, Merthyr Town 1
Ian Traylor, a striker with a ‘crazy’ Martyrs strike rate, fired Merthyr Town’s winner in their Emirates FA Cup tie at Plymouth Parkway in Devon.
’Traylz’ fired the only goal of the tie after 76 minutes, intercepting a loose crossfield pass midway in the Parkway half before running unchallenged and shooting low into the corner from 20 yards.
That was Traylor’s 179th goal for Merthyr in 392 appearances for the club and player-manager Gavin Williams said: “Traylor does things that other players in this league can’t do.
“He scores goals regularly from wide positions and fingers crossed he keeps doing that. It’s crazy how many goals he has scored over the last three or four years.”
Merthyr progress to the second qualifying round of the cup and Williams says: “It was a tough game. Full credit to Plymouth Parkway because they pushed us all the way.
“They are two divisions below us but on that performance that’s not where they are in terms of their team quality.
“I was delighted with the goal which takes us into the next round.”
The Martyrs have won their last three matches and now focus on Chesham United at home in a Betvictor Southern Premier fixture this Saturday (3pm).
Williams was happy with the team performance, adding: “I am really pleased, but there is still more to come from us.
“We won’t get carried away and must keep turning in performances of this calibre. The boys put on a great show and now we just be ready for Chesham. The minute standards are allowed to drop you come unstuck. Now we will recharge the batteries this week and be ready for another tough game this Saturday.”
Kerry Morgan was an influential player for Merthyr and was causing major problems for Parkway defenders. Traylor headed wide from a Morgan cross and then, from another cross by the former Swansea City winger, Merthyr had strong penalty appeals turned down.
Merthyr looked to play the ball out the back, looking composed and comfortable in possession.
Big men Gethyn Hill and Ryan Prosser were again missing from the Merthyr squad through injury and that gave Parkway central defenders Rob Farkins and Nick Milton the chance to command things in the air.
Traylor, though, had the quality needed with the ball at his feet to put Merthyr on top and he struck the lone goal with 14 minutes left.
Parkway pushed forward looking for an equaliser, but Merthyr’s defence remained solid and composed with goalkeeper Alex Harris rarely called into action.
Parkway pushed men forward and had plenty of possession, but were unable to create clear cut chances.
This was a close-fought match played in the right spirit with Merthyr showing a little extra quality at key times in key areas.
Plymouth Parkway: Kyle Moore, Aaron Bentley, Ryan Lane, Billy Palfrey (Sean Thomson 83), Rob Farkins, Nick Milton, Mikey Williams, Shane Krac (Fletcher Williams 75), Adam Carter, Teigam Rosenquest, Jordan Copp. Subs not used: Will Copp, Antonio Costa.
Merthyr Town: Alex Harris, Adam Davies (Capt), Kerry Morgan (Ben Swallow 60), Craig McDonnell, Jarrad Wright, Kyle Patten, Owain Jones, Lee Lucas, Tom Meecham (Ashley Evans 60), Jamie Veale, Ian Traylor. Subs not used: Cameron Coxe (gk), Camden Duncan, Gavin Williams.