Heavy defeat harsh on depleted Bay

Tim ChannonFirst Team

AFTER being left struggling to field a team, the Seagulls put in a battling performance that did not deserve the 5-0 defeat they suffered at Sutton Coldfield Town (April 5).

Four goals came in the last 17 minutes when fatigue, after playing five games in 11 days,  began to show and with no substitutes available to provide fresh legs.

Already without injured Cory Williams and Liam Gibson, Shaun Dowling was taken ill during the day, Adam Morgan decided not to travel because of his hamstring strain and Connor Roberts-Nurse also failed to turn up after he was left on the bench last Saturday.

On top of that Carl Rodgers, who was one of only two outfield subs, was unable to take any part after aggrevating his calf injury in the pre-match warm up  and defender Jordan Fagbola had to come off after only 29 minutes with another hamstring strain.

He was replaced by Jordan Harper, who was the only sub available,  forcing Bay to go three at the back.

Josh Sumner also played the whole game with his ankle heavily strapped, but put in a huge shift.

Despite going a goal down from a corner after only six minutes, the Bay gradually got into the game and in the last ten minutes of the first half and the first 20 minutes of the second half really took the game to home side and had two of three outstanding chances to turn the game around.

Carl Lamb somehow sidefooted wide from inside the six yard box from  Harper’s low cross and then Nathan Quirk and Jack Kelleher left the final shot to each after a good run by Quirk into the area had opened up the home defence, who were then able to clear.

The Bay could and should have been 2-1 up, but after being on the back foot for over 20 minutes, Sutton Coldfield broke away to snatch a second goal against the run of play on 73 minutes and then ran away with the game in the last 15 minutes as Bay crumbled at the back.

Joint caretaker player-boss Carl Rodgers said: “I feel so disappointed for the players because they played well for a good portion of the match and it certainly wasn’t a 5-0 game.

“The key thing was that they were able to bring on three subs with fresh legs in the second half whereas we couldn’t because we didn’t have anyone.

“Shaun (Dowling) called in late to say he had started vomiting and we didn’t want to risk him passing anything on to the rest of the squad, and we only found out that Morgan wasn’t coming when we were on  the bus. It was too late then to try and get anyone from the reserves at such short notice.

“I thought I might be OK to come off the bench, but I felt my calf again in the warm-up and if I had tried to play I could have put myself out for the rest of the season.

“It is very disappointing after the good win on Saturday and other results going our way, but hopefully we’ll have some more bodies available for the weekend and while it is still mathematically possible we will we keep fighting and believing.”

Colwyn Bay: Craig Ellison, Ben Cartwright, Bradley Bauress, Luke Denson, Jordan Fagbola (Jordan Harper 29mins), Antonie Boland, Josh Sumner, Nathan Quirk, Jack Kelleher, Carl Lamb, Stephen Wilson. Unused sub: Carl Rodgers.

Attendance: 118