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Welsh Premier League: Double injury blow as Gap Connah’s Quay well beaten by The New Saints

GAP Connah’s Quay’s 5-1 defeat at Corbett Sports Welsh Premier League leaders The New Saints on Friday came at a cost.

The already depleted Deeside Stadium outfit lost Rob Jones and Dean Canning to serious-looking injuries at a time when they were very much in the game.

The Saints opened the scoring in the fifth minute when Michael Wilde showed bravery to head in after his initial effort had hit the bar.

But parity was restored within three minutes as Rhys Healey enhanced his growing reputation by slotting a cool finish under Paul Harrison to take his tally for the season up to 14.

But Nomads, for whom it was their third straight league loss, were hit by a hammer blow midway through an open first half when Jones suffered a suspected broken nose after being hit by a flailing arm.

The away side’s luck worsened in the 32nd minute when Dean Canning landed awkwardly and had to be taken off with a badly bruised arm.

The hosts immediately rubbed salt into the wounds as Phil Baker stooped to head home after a Christian Seargeant free kick cracked the crossbar.

The Saints took control after the break and three goals inside 21 minutes sealed a victory which moved them five points clear of second-placed Bangor City.

Sam Finley fired home a stunner from 25 yards, marauding left-back Chris Marriott added a fine fourth, and Greg Draper rounded off the scoring moments after coming on.

Nomads are at home to neighbours Airbus UK Broughton on New Year’s Day (2.30pm).

There is a big Huws Gray Alliance derby at The Globe on Saturday as Buckley Town play host to Flint Town United (2.30pm).

It will be Buckley’s second game of the week after they made the trip to table-topping Rhyl yesterday in a match that took place after the Chronicle went to press.

Rhydymwyn host Penycae on Saturday (2pm).

Rhydymwyn’s visit of Flint and Buckley’s clash with Guilsfield last Saturday were rained off.

The rain washed out last weekend’s Welsh National League, Lock Stock Welsh Alliance and Clwyd League East programmes.