Monmouthshire Windows East Gwent League

Division 1

Caldicot Castle A 4 Rockfield Rovers 3

CALDICOT Castle A moved into third place with a narrow victory over a battling Rovers outfit who took the field with a part-time keeper, writes Bob Cypher.

Castle opened a two-goal lead three times but, although pegged back each time, they took the three points thanks to a Rick Woodland header.

Player manager Joe O’Brien was pleased he had been able to name a full subs bench for the first time this season while the visitors had problems through injuries and unavailability and included defensive midfielder Harry Wilkes between the sticks.

“We have two keepers and neither was available so I asked Harry to put the gloves on,” Rovers boss Dave McDonald said.

“He has played there years ago but it’s obviously not the ideal thing.

“I thought we did well, we were always in it and some of the decisions didn’t go our way but that’s football.

“We go again next week.”

His opposite number also mentioned injuries and unavailability being a particular frustration for an ambitious team.

“We have 50 players signed on but this is the first time I had a full bench and our B team didn’t have a game,” O’Brien said.

“We were lucky to have Sean Marsh this week. He’s in the Army and can’t play every week and Tim Battersby isn’t always available for selection because of his job.

“It’s frustrating when, an hour before kick-off, I am not sure how many players I will have to pick from.

“That was one of the reasons we are out of the Intermediate Cup, we lost to the worst team we’ve played all season, without a number of first team players.

“Last week Dave Hayward was unavailable and Sean filled in as goalkeeper and he probably helped win the game against Severn Tunnel.

“Against Rovers I always thought we had the edge but fair play to them, they never gave up and were very competitive throughout.

“We are away to Ponthir in the second round of the Gwent Amateur Cup this weekend and, fingers crossed, we’ll have a full team and bench. I hope so, anyway.”

Castle’s goals came from skipper Craig McCluskey (2), O’Brien and Rick Woodland, while Rovers scored through Sam Hamley and Dan Lane (2).