FOOTBALL: Crowd trouble mars Cofi cup double triumph at Bangor


Tomos Hughes

CAERNARFON Town sealed a cup double by winning the NWCFA Challenge Cup against ten-man Bangor City in a fast and furious final which was shrouded by crowd trouble.

In a final that had had everything and then some, Town’s Jordan Barrow buried the winning penalty to spark a pitch invasion among Caernarfon supporters, which brought about ugly scenes that forced security officials and police officers to intervene.

The match was interrupted inside the first minute when a flare thrown on the pitch by the Canaries contingent, before ex-Canary Jamie McDaid rounded keeper Paul Pritchard on 14 minutes to put City ahead.

The feverish atmosphere was taken up a notch on the half hour when City’s Gerwyn Jones was sent off for obstructing Town’s Cai Jones as he was about to score in an empty net.

The referee awarded a penalty, and Nick Bould pulled off a great save to deny Dion Donohue.

After ramping up the pressure, skipper Graheme Austin headed Town level on 41 minutes from close range.

Bould saved superbly from a goalbound low effort from Cai Jones in the second half as Caernarfon hunted a second.

But after a lull in play, both sides frantically went in pursuit of a late winner – Caernarfon going close through Gwynedd again, while City’s Colbeck fired wastefully at Pritchard.

It came to no avail however, and the match was taken to extra time.

The ten-man hosts regained the lead in the 98th minute as Colbeck converted a Caio Hywel cross at the back post.

Caernarfon were back on terms on the stroke of half time, when Bould brought Gwynedd down in the area; Barrow made no mistake with his second spot kick.

Both sides again went close to a winner in the second half, with City sub Ieuan Lloyd going closest with a superb dinked shot that hit the crossbar, but the match was inevitably taken to penalties.

Joe Culshaw and McDaid buried penalties for City, while Austin and Chris Williams fired in for Town, before Colbeck had his shot dramatically held up on the line by Pritchard to hand Town the advantage.

Both sides converted perfect penalties thereafter, with Barrow on hand to smash down the middle to seal the trophy and spark a pitch invasion by Canaries supporters.

Several invaders had to be restrained and escorted off the pitch by security as they confronted City fans, as the crowd trouble took some of the gloss from a cup final that will live long in the

Bangor City: Nick Bould, Caio Hywel, Gerwyn Jones (c), Joe Culshaw, Iolo Hughes, Corey Jones, Jay Colbeck, Craig Whelan, Sam Faulkner (Ieuan Lloyd 95 mins), Phil Warrington (Dafydd Jones 105 mins), Jamie McDaid. Subs not used: Chris Jones.

Caernarfon Town: Paul Pritchard, Steve Kehoe (Geraint Mitchell 105 mins, replaced by Clive Williams 107 mins), Chris Williams, Graheme Austin (c), Danny Murphy, Kevin Roberts, Dion Donohue, Jordan Barrow, Cai Jones, Luke Powell-Thomas (Moses Barnett 71 mins), Ywain Gwynedd.

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