| 5°C Belfast

Sean Ward 'baffled' at failure to award Glenavon second penalty in frustrating draw with Dungannon



Gary Hamilton's Glenavon are still awaiting a first league win.

Gary Hamilton's Glenavon are still awaiting a first league win.

Gary Hamilton's Glenavon are still awaiting a first league win.

Glenavon defender Sean Ward says the decision over his side's second penalty call of their stalemate at home to Dungannon Swifts was 'baffling'.

Referee Steven Gregg had pointed to the spot in the first half when Danny Purkis rounded Swifts stopper Sam Johnston and was brought down.

While Conor McCloskey sent that spot-kick over the bar, it looked like the Lurgan Blues had been handed a second chance before the hour-mark when, in a carbon copy, Purkis again rounded Johnston and hit the deck.

It seemed certain that referee Gregg would award another penalty but, after some deliberation, opted instead to award a goal-kick to Dungannon.

As Ward echoed, the puzzling element came in the decision not to either give the spot-kick or book Purkis for simulation.

"If he doesn't give the penalty, you have to question why he doesn't brandish the yellow card to Danny Purkis," said Ward.

"He's done neither so it's quite baffling as to how he came to the conclusion that he did.

"Danny's very clear in his assessment that it's a penalty and he has no reason to say otherwise. From where I was, it looked a clear penalty but we don't have the benefit of action replays. It'll be one to look back at later.

"It's a tough job for referees and we can only hope they go home, like players do, and reflect on their performances."

After joining the club during the summer, Ward's wait for a first Glenavon win continues but, after a 4-2 defeat to Portadown and 1-1 draw at Glentoran, he was keen to take the positives.

"We're pleased that get came away with that clean sheet," he said.

"We lacked a wee bit of quality in the final third. Balls into the box should have been better. We're disappointed we couldn't capitalise and punish Dungannon. One point from six at home isn't good enough for us.

"We went with the back five and looked solid. Myself and James Singleton were able to push forward at wing-back.

"If we don't concede goals then we don't lose games and that's a platform for us to build on."

Belfast Telegraph