TNS make heavy weather of lowly Reds
TNS duly recorded their first league win for a month, but struggled to find their best form against a Llanelli outfit who belied their lowly league position.
To their credit the visitors, desperate for points, were always looking to go forward and despite creating a host of chances, Saints were never able to establish a comfort zone.
The Reds sounded a wake-up call in the 10th minute when Gerard Doherty saved at the feet of Peter Cheesman, but Saints settled their nerves with a goal five minutes later.
A corner from John Lawless eluded keeper Gareth Williams and Chris Taylor headed in at the far post.
But the visitors were level 10 minutes later, although somewhat fortuitiously, when Gavin Guy sliced his effort from Steve Crabbe's free-kick and it deflected off a defender for Martin Rose to stab past Doherty.
TNS were on the road to victory within seconds of the restart, when referee Steve Hames waved play on after a foul on Hogan and Scott Ruscoe sent a 35-yard screamer past a helpless Williams.
But the Llanelli keeper twice did well to save from the feet of raiders Jamie Wood and Lawless and also saved a Mike Wilde effort.
TNS finally got the goal their pressure deserved on 80 minutes, when Lawless fed Chris King who crossed for Marc Lloyd-Williams to head his 26th league goal of the season at the far post.
Just when the points seemed to be in the bag, Cheesman caught Taylor in possession in the box. Rose fed Craig Williams free on the left and he fired his shot across Doherty and into the net off the foot of the far post.
It could have been worse had Cheesman done better with a header from in front of goal and Dyfan Pierce also sent a 20-yarder just wide of a post.
In between, Wood ran from halfway and saw his shot hit the post, but Wilde made no mistake with the last kick of the match, after late substitute John Toner beat his man down the right and provided for a good finish from the frontman.
The final whistle brought relief rather than joy for Ken McKenna's men, who have yet to find their early season form and looked jittery at the back for most of the game