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Sarah keeps Wales on course
 Women's Football News 15 Jun 2014
 
Sarah keeps Wales on course - 15 Jun 2014 - Women's Football NewsWales 1 (Wiltshire 33) Turkey 0
A first half goal from Sarah Wiltshire brought Wales closer to a play-off place in their World Cup qualifying group. 
 
Jarmo Matikainen's side were not at their best in front of a sell out crowd at Haverfordwest although they did hit the woodwork twice and were denied on a number of occasions by impressive Turkish goalkeeper Ezgi Caglar as they won at a canter. However another good result was marred by a serious looking injury to midfielder Hayley Ladd during the second half.
 
Wales had triumphed 5-1 when the sides had met a few months earlier and Turkey appeared determined not to suffer this again as they kept things very tight early on with a defensive line up and employing Cigdem Belci to man mark Wales captain Jessica Fishlock.
 
Natasha Harding almost got in before being denied by a smothering save from Caglar but the deadlock was broken shortly after the half hour through a well worked goal.
 
After Fishlock had initially done well to keep possession under pressure, Angharad James slid an inch perfect through ball into the path of Wiltshire who tucked a right foot shot past the oncoming Caglar for her seventh international goal.
 
Buoyed by the strike, Wales sought a second and it almost came when Sophie Ingle thumped a header against the bar from a Helen Bleazard corner.
 
As the game went into first half injury time, Harding made a strong run towards the edge of the penalty area before laying the ball off to Fishlock whose shot was charged down. The rebound fell for Ladd to produce a well struck effort which brought out an excellent save from Caglar.
 
The pattern of the game continued after the break with Wales dominating possession and Turkey content to soak up any pressure. Loren Dykes and Wiltshire were both lively down the flanks but despite winning a series of corners, Wales again found it hard to get in behind a packed Turkish defence.
 
It was Wiltshire who almost provided a second goal with a snap shot from 25 yards but once again Caglar was equal to the challenge as she touched the ball onto the bar for another fine save.
 
Just two minutes later though, a Dykes run and cross was cleared to the edge of the area where Ladd attempted a volley at goal. The midfielder's studs appeared to catch in the turf and she fell awkwardly, crumpling over her left ankle and was clearly in distress. She was taken off on a stretcher with her leg in a brace, to be replaced by Michelle Green who came on for her 91st cap.
 
Fishlock ballooned a free kick well over the bar and had another touched past the post by Caglar as Wales continued to call the shots. They had also been on the receiving end of some robust challenges and their task was made easier as Didem Karagenc was shown a second yellow card following a foul on Dykes.
 
A quickly taken free kick by Fishlock brought out a good stop from Caglar whilst Wiltshire and James both had shots saved by the excellent Turkish keeper.
 
Turkey had made a defensive substitution following the sending off, removing their best player Bilgin Defterli, and showed little ambition in coming out of defence. This allowed Wales to run down the clock with some possession football across their back four and goalkeeper Nicola Davies rarely touched the ball in what must have been one of her quietest appearances for her country.
 
Wales can now look forward to their trip to play Belarus on Thursday in search of three more points to keep themselves in second place. 
 
Wales: Nicola Davies, Nicola Cousins, Helen Bleazard, Kylie Davies, Sophie Ingle, Angharad James, Loren Dykes, Hayley Ladd (sub Michelle Green 69mins), Natasha Harding, Jessica Fishlock, Sarah Wiltshire (sub Josie Green 90mins). Subs not used: Sophie Dando, Rhian Cleverley, Carys Hawkins, Nadia Lawrence, Georgia Evans.

Turkey: Ezgi Caglar, Sevinc Corlu, Didem Karagenc, Cigdem Belci, Hanife Demiryol (sub Ebru Topcu 57mins), Arzu Karabulut, Bilgin Defterli (sub Berna Yeniceri 81mins), Fatma Kara (sub Emine Ecem Esem 66mins), Yagmur Uraz, Sibel Duman, Esra Erol. Subs not used: Fatma Sahin, Emine Gumus, Eylul Elgalp, Elif Deniz.

Photos:

(top) Cigdem Belci about to clear away from Angharad James
(middle) Sarah Wiltshire goes close with this effort on goal
(bottom) Loren Dykes gets in a cross under pressure from Didem Karagenc

 
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