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Airbus UK Broughton: Freak strike sees Afan Lido earn point at the Airfield

Airbus UK Broughton 1Afan Lido 1

AIRBUS were left to rue a freak early goal which proved enough for Afan Lido to claim a share of the Welsh Premier League points on Saturday.

The South Wales visitors took a ninth-minute lead when defender Liam Hancock’s cross deceived Airbus keeper Niki Lee Bulmer, sailing over his head and into the back of the net from 30 yards out.

The Wingmakers equalised just before the break thanks to Mark Cadwallader’s diving header but were unable to find any further cracks in Lido’s stubborn defence.

Club secretary Phil Bailey said: “It wasn’t a great performance but we didn’t lose – and that’s the main thing.”

Bulmer has been Airbus’ hero on several occasions this season but there were question marks over his positioning for Hancock’s goal.

“Niki was outstanding in our League Cup game against TNS,” said Bailey. “But that’s the problem when you’re a goalkeeper – every mistake you make gets highlighted.”

The Broughton hosts gradually took control in the second half, bringing out a succession of saves from Lido keeper Craig Morris.

They nearly grabbed a winner in the closing stages but were unlucky when Cadwallader’s angled effort went just wide of the upright.

The Wingmakers, who had to do without injured duo Neville Thompson and Ryan Edwards on Saturday, are still top of the Play-Off Conference.

Airbus: Bulmer, Taylor, Worton, Connolly, Grannon, G Rule, G Cadwallader, M Cadwallader, Bathurst, Danks (Whitfield 79), Hayes. Subs: Holmes, Griffiths, Roberts, Hope.

Attendance: 210.

This Sunday, Airbus are away to Port Talbot Town (2.30pm).

They have one other league game – at home to Newton a week tomorrow – before facing Cefn Druids in the semi-finals of the Welsh Cup on Saturday, March 31.

It is the biggest match in the history of Airbus, who have never before reached the last four.

Club officials hope to run a coach for supporters to the game, which will be staged at Rhyl’s Belle Vue stadium (12.30pm). The coach will leave the Wings Sports and Social Club at 11.15am and costs £10 per person.

To book your place, contact Phil Bailey (01244 677016) or Stewart Roberts (07542 883923).

Match admission is £7 (adults) and £3 (concessions).