Pont defences finally breached

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Percy Main Amateurs 1 Ponteland United 0 NFA Senior Benevolent Bowl, Quarter-Finals

PONTELAND conceded their first goal in 530 minutes of football but it was sufficient to see them eliminated from the NFA Senior Benevolent Bowl competition.

The only goal of the game was scored in the 80th minute by Tony Browell, who coincidentally scored the winning goals to knock Ponteland out of the Kicks Leisure Challenge Cup back in September.

The game was a typical cup tie and an end-to-end affair.

Percy Main started strongly and were quickly using their long-throw specialist to launch balls into the goal area.

However, the Pont defence stood firm with keeper Powell safely collecting throws too near to him.

John Amos, leading the Main attack, was making himself available but often wasted chances by shooting too early or wildly off target.

His best chance came from a long throw from the left which evaded the defence but the striker’s header went straight into the arms of Powell and on another occasion he pounced onto a long ball over the Pont defence but Redhead recovered well and poked the ball for a corner just as Amos was about to shoot.

As the half went on, Pont started to get on top with Redhead overlapping down the right causing the most danger.

A corner from Davidson was headed down by Ford into the path of Salter but his shot was blocked bravely by keeper Rodgerson.

The home keeper also thwarted Redhead, tipping his powerful shot round the post.

From the corner, another header from Ford found Salter with his back to goal and this time, the centre-back produced an overhead kick which went over the bar.

Perhaps the best chance of the first half went to Malcolm Morien when the ball was cut back to him from the right but once again it went high and wide without troubling Powell.

The second half started in similar fashion to the first with the home team on top with substitute William Barras causing some problems, linking well with Michael Bowman.

Bowman beat Ford down the left and crossed to Barras but his deliberate side-foot shot went wide.

He then turned provider to Bowman but he too couldn’t direct his header on goal.

At the other end, a corner from Dummett finished with a scramble in the Main goalmouth before the ball was poked away for another corner and, shortly afterwards, Pont had their best chance of the game when Kerr played a good ball into the stride of the overlapping Redhead but he fired his shot into the side-netting with only the keeper to beat.

With 20 minutes remaining, Main had a great opportunity when Dummett misdirected a back pass to keeper Powell but it was intercepted by the alert Amos, who, although in on goal, selflessly elected to feed the ball into the path of Morien but he blasted high and wide with the goal at his mercy.

It looked increasingly likely that the game would go into extra-time but, with 10 minutes to go, the stalemate was broken and it was Main’s Tony Browell who, for the second time this season, thwarted Pont, although there was a little fortune in the build-up.

Browell had gone forward for a free-kick, which was played in quite low.

A sliced clearance from the normally-reliable Salter went in the air and back over the defence heads to find Browell between the defence and the keeper.

He was able to direct his header over Powell and into the net to the delight of the home supporters.

The game continued to ebb and flow but, with their noses in front, Percy Main continued to battle for every ball.

Powell went up for a corner to try to salvage something at the death but it was to no avail and Main went through to the Benevolent Bowl semi-finals.