CAERNARFON Town returned to JD Cymru Premier action with a late 2-1 home defeat to Connah’s Quay Nomads.

The Canaries ran the defending champions extremely close and might have secured a share of the spoils had it not been for a controversial penalty decision that went against Huw Griffiths’ side, find themselves in sixth position ahead of their trick looking trip to in-form Penybont on Saturday.

Former Prestatyn Town duo Michael Parker and Jack Kenny were handed their debuts by Griffiths, with skipper Gareth Edwards also able to make his return following a shoulder strain.

The hosts got off to an impressive start and carved out the game’s first chance on 13 minutes when Mike Hayes’ volley was tipped round the post by visiting custodian Lewis Brass.

This was followed by three penalty claims for the home side that were all waved off, but the Nomads gradually made their presence felt as the half progressed and almost went into the break a goal to the good after Sameron Dool and Aeron Edwards forced Josh Tibbetts into action.

After the break saw the Cofis’ come out with a renewed sense of purpose and they almost went ahead shortly following the interval when Sion Bradley’s close-range header was diverted by Brass.

They didn’t have to wait much longer for the opener, which came on 50 minutes when Hayes finished well after stunning work from Bradley in the build-up.

This provoked a strong response from Andy Morrison’s side, who got back on level terms with 75 on the clock thanks to a header from veteran striker Michael Wilde that found the top corner.

The game’s deciding moment arrived in stoppage time when substitute Danny Brookwell was adjudged to have brought down Callum Morris in the area amid fierce protests from the Town players.

Morris dusted himself off to put away the spot kick, and things got heated late on when an altercation between Edwards and Paulo Mendes resulted in a melee that saw Brass, Bradley, Callum Roberts and Noah Edwards all sent off.