Craig Jones retains ambition to move up after assisting Westfields to win over Heath Hayes (From Hereford Times)
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Craig Jones retains ambition to move up after assisting Westfields to win over Heath Hayes
CRAIG Jones would love to play at a higher level – but he’s enjoying life at Westfields.
Jones was a pro at Hereford United and played against then top-flight outfit Portsmouth in the league cup.
The 23-year-old midfielder has been grabbing a lot of the headlines at Westfields since his release from Edgar Street.
He put in-form Westfields on the road to victory over Heath Hayes in the Midland Alliance last Saturday with an angled drive in the sixth minute.
Jones also rattled a post with a curling free-kick in the first-half and struck the bar with a lob in the 73rd minute as Westfields sealed their 15th league win of the season.
Hereford-based Westfields are fifth in the table, just three points behind third-placed Bridgnorth Town, and unbeaten in their last 11 matches.
“You always want to go higher – I will never give up on that,” said Jones, who scored Westfields’ goal in last week’s 1-0 victory at Pegasus Juniors in the semi-final of the HFA County Challenge Cup.
“I was at Hereford United three years ago and loved every minute of it.
“Maybe I didn’t get the crack that I thought I deserved.
“To play against Portsmouth from the Premier League was a fantastic experience and something I will always remember. I should have scored in that match.
“Hereford play at a good standard of football and it would be brilliant to go back.”
Last month, Jones’ uncle, Sean Edwards, who manages Westfields, said he couldn’t understand why the midfielder was not at Edgar Street.
Edwards was missing from Saturday’s match because he was working in the London area.
Jones, who works as a postman with Royal Mail, said: “People say that I should be higher than I am but, since I have been at Westfields, there has been no contact from any clubs.
“I don’t really think about things like that – I just get on with football and do my best with Westfields because I love it here. “But if I got a chance to go back to Hereford United, I would love to.”
Another former Hereford United youngster, Aidan Thomas, starred against second-from-bottom Heath Hayes and was unlucky not to grab a hat-trick.
Thomas cracked in Westfields’ second goal in the ninth minute and he put the result beyond doubt with the hosts’ third with a low volley after 30 minutes.The striker was close to completing his treble in the 38th minute but visiting defender Dale Roberts somehow deflected his goal-bound shot over the bar.
Jones said: “Aidan is a very good player and he’s come here and started at left-midfield."
He added: “We’ve put him upfront and he’s thrived on that.”
Westfields created a host of first-half chances against struggling Heath Hayes, who are second from bottom, and could have been leading by six or seven goals at the interval.
Jamie Cuss, Sam Gwynne and skipper Phil Glover all went close to finding the net before Daniel Scragg blazed over for the visitors and Matt Gwynne made a smart save at his near post.
But the visitors were much harder to break down in a scrappy second-half and Gwynne was forced into making a reaction save to keep out the battling visitors.
Westfields looked in control but were frustrated in the second period and Zac Sirrell was booked for a poor challenge on 50 minutes.
The crowd was boosted in the second-half by the arrival of players and management from Pegasus Juniors who took advantage of a day off to watch Lads Club, Bartestree and Westfields in action.
Jones said: “We started slowly this season because we had a lot of defenders out injured like Glover. “But we have kicked on since Christmas and picked up some big results since then.”
Westfields travel to table-topping Stratford Town in the league this Saturday.
Stratford head the table by 13 points from second-placed Stourport Swifts.
They recorded a 2-1 win at Westfields November.
“Stratford on Saturday is a massive game for us,” said Jones.
“If we can beat them, we’ll be right back in it.
“They are saying that it could be three up and all we have to do is keeping winning our games.”