Kick off:17:30 Saturday, 6 Dec 2008
Fixture Type: Welsh Premier League
Referee: Lee Evans
RAMPANT Rhyl boosted their title prospects with a ruthless showing to leave the Saints' unbeaten record in tatters in this top of the table showdown.
The Saints had won their previous seven league outings at home, but were well beaten as the Lilywhites moved three points clear. Unbeaten away from home this term, the visitors soon warmed to the icy conditions as they made a sixth-minute breakthrough courtesy of former Wrexham forward Neil Roberts.
And two more strikes in the second half from defenders George Horan and Greg Stones settled the issue, while TNS's dismal night ended with a frustrated Jamie Wood being red-carded in injury time.
Rhyl were quickly into their stride and capitalised on a sixth-minute slip to take the lead. Stones robbed Wood on the left of the box, rounded John McKenna before squaring for Roberts to coolly slot his ninth league goal of the season inside the left upright.
The Saints struggled to carve many clear openings on a frustrating night, their best first-half opening seeing Wood have a shot parried by keeper Lee Kendall before clutching Craig Williams header from the rebound.
With the conditions becoming increasingly icy underfoot, TNS battled to get back into the game after the break with Craig Williams and sub John Toner having a couple of efforts blocked by Kendall. But Rhyl were to wrap up the points with two goals in seven minutes, Horan blasting the first from six yards on 69 minutes after Mark Connollys cross from the right had been flicked on.
And the points were wrapped up when Stones steered home his low shot from the edge of the box on 76 after Roberts neatly stepped over the ball. With the encounter becoming increasingly niggly, TNS skipper Wood was sent off in the dying seconds following a wild challenge that sparked some unsavoury scenes.