Connah's Quay Nomads 2 Cwmbran Town 2
NOMADS’ hopes of qualifying for Europe for the first time in their history suffered a major blow as they were made to settle for a point against lowly Cwmbran.
And had it not been for Craig Garside’s late leveller it would have been much worse for Nev Powell’s side.
Nomads, playing a third fixture in the space of a week, never got going in the opening period and could have been behind by the time the visitors broke the deadlock in the 18th-minute, when Martin Houston headed in Jason Davies’ cross.
The hosts were hardly helped by the match official, who incensed the home supporters when he turned away their appeals for a penalty and when Cwmbran keeper Gareth Wesson seemingly handled outside the box.
Quay boss Powell rang the changes at the interval – and they had the desired effect.
Wesson twice denied Tommy Mutton. Firstly, by turning the striker’s header on to the bar and then somehow managing to palm his close-range effort around the post.
Wesson could do nothing about Garside’s 66th-minute equaliser, though, as the midfielder rammed in after a goalmouth scramble.
Yet Nomads’ joy was short-lived, as seven minutes later Cwmbran regained the lead when Houston took advantage of some dreadful defending to fire in.
Powell’s men came storming back and impressive substitute Phil Molyneux twice hit the woodwork.
But they weren’t to be denied, as man-of-the-match Garside volleyed in Molyneux’s long throw with five minutes to go.