Kingfishers sign off in sixth after long season

Friday 6th May 2022 11:00 am
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Monmouth Kingfishers
(Stuart Townsend/ Barcud Coch Photography )

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The Kingfishers were wrapping up their season at title-chasing Abertillery Bluebirds last night (after the Beacon went to print), and will finish sixth in the 16-team Ardal South East League regardless of the result.

In midweek, Monmouth lost 4-2 at home to Caldicot, who went second behind Abergavenny after completing their fixtures, and were hoping the Kingfishers could help them last night.

Victory for Bluebirds would take them top, pushing the Swans back to third and leaving Abergavenny having to draw or win to claim the title at home to Trethomas this Friday night (May 6) at Pen Y Pound (ko 7.30pm).

Two goals at the end of the first half made it 1-1 at the break at Blestium Stadium in midweek, Nick Harrhy cancelling out the headed opener by Caldi’s Matthew James for his sixth goal in 11 games.

But the Swans were back in front four minutes after the restart thanks to a smart Ben Smith turn and finish, despite what looked like a foul on stand-in keeper Elliott Ford.

As the hosts began to run out of energy after six games in 17 days, Sam Swann profited on 65 minutes, latching on to a ball over the top to fire into the bottom corner for 3-1.

Josh Maksimovic gave Monmouth a lifeline within three minutes though, firing in for 3-2. But their hopes were dashed five minutes later when a deflected Ben Donoghue shot looped over keeper Ford into the net.

Things could have got worse when Smith was upended in the box, but Ford was equal to the challenge saving the spot kick low to his left, with Caldi holding on to take the points.

Kingfishers boss Scott Russell said: “We ran out of steam. We gave them a really good game for an hour but credit to the lads, a good few were playing with injuries to help us get over the line with two games to go.”

Chepstow Town followed up a 4-1 loss to Croesyceiliog with a 2-1 home win over Tredegar to finish ninth.

And meanwhile, Matty Jones with a fantastic free-kick and Nathan Ward and Lewis Hull fired Monmouth 2nds to a 3-2 home win after trailing 2-0 to fourth-place Abertillery Bluebirds in the FAW Cymru Reserves South East League in midweek.

They finished their campaign on Saturday with a 3-1 home win over Cwmbran Celtic thanks to a Jake Parella brace and one from Sam Williams to finish 10th.

Chepstow Town 2nds also lifted themselves off the bottom with a 4-3 win at Tredegar on Friday, and play their last match at home to Abertillery Bluebirds this Friday (May 6).

Elsewhere, third-placed Caldicot Castle beat second-placed hosts Portskewett & Sudbrook in East Gwent 1, while Division 2 champions Underwood thrashed the latter’s 2nds 11-2 and Thornwell R&W 2nds squeezed out Tintern Abbey 1-0.

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