Flashback – 10 years ago: Depleted Port hit new heights to reach final

Marcus Orlik helped Port on their way with a wonder goal

Buckley Town 1 (Anthony Williams 63)
CPD Porthmadog 3 (Marcus Orlik 43, Paul Roberts 48, Mike Foster pen 59)
Huws Gray Challenge Cup semi-final – April 13, 2011

Despite all the problems of three ineligible players, two on international duty and a lengthy injury list Porthmadog pulled off a remarkable win in a Huws Gray Challenge Cup semi-final at Rhyl on this night 10 years ago.

With five of the starting line-up carrying injuries it was an achievement to get 11 players on the pitch and the signs were not good early on as Buckley dominated possession with Port hardly getting out of their own half in the opening 15 minutes.

In that time Neil Wynne went close with two speculative efforts.

Eventually Port did get a foothold in the game and Marcus Orlik fired into the side netting after 15 minutes.

Orlik had an even better chance five minutes later when a cross from Paul Roberts found him but the striker totally missed his kick when well placed.

Buckley still had most of the play but the Port defence dealt with their threat well.

On 27 minutes Paul Roberts was presented with a golden opportunity after a through pass from Gareth Jones-Evans but was unable to round the keeper Jamie Hulse.

Buckley’s Wes Brereton went close with a rasping 25 yard free kick on 40 minutes while a delicate lob by Jones Evans was stopped by the extended fingertips of Hulse moments later.

The deadlock was eventually broken on 43 minutes in spectacular fashion when Mike Foster took a quick throw in to Orlik who chested the ball in-field and then unleashed a superb dipping half-volley from 35 yards which gave Hulse no chance.

That must have drastically changed the half-time talks in both camps and things altered further when Porthmadog added a second three minutes into the second period.

Half-time: Buckley 0 Porthmadog 1

In the 48th minute Porthmadog broke following some Buckley pressure with a powerful 50 yard run by Jones Evans.

A 1-2 with Paul Roberts put the young midfielder in behind the Buckley rearguard. Then Jones Evans’ cut back found Roberts, who fired accurately into the bottom left hand corner of the net.

Jones Evans, injured by his exertions, was substituted with Craig Roberts coming on.

Mike Foster was his usual deadly self from the spot

Port were now rampant and added a third when Orlik broke into the box on the left only to be upended by a rash challenge by right back Freeman. Foster calmly converted from the spot.

Four minutes later and Buckley themselves were awarded a penalty when a bouncing ball was adjudged to have been handled by a Port defender, Anthony Williams slotting home to pull one back.

Buckley now went all out attack, pushing centre-half Gareth Edwards into the front line and going three at the back.

Town had their chances with Stuart Hayes and Brereton going close.

Paul Roberts meanwhile had another one on one situation with the keeper only to be denied again and an Orlik free kick went just over.

As if to underline Buckley’s misery another late opportunity by Williams was superbly blocked on the line by Ryan Davies with keeper Richard Harvey out of position.

All credit to the players for their efforts and a great win especially considering Buckley had beaten Port twice in the league.

Porthmadog: Harvey, Jack Jones. Foster, Darren Jones (Parry 90), Ryan Davies, Gareth Owen, Jones-Evans (Craig Roberts 50′), Pyrs, Paul Roberts, Orlik (Harrison 90), Richie Owen.

Buckley: Hulse, Freeman (Pugh 65), Delgado (Roberts 72), Rowlands, Edwards, Brereton (Calder 81), Leonard, Chaloner, Hayes, Williams, Wynne.

Many thanks to Gerallt Owen of Porthmadog for an excellent report

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