EXCITEMENT is building in the Amman Valley for Cwmamman United and Ammanford as they get ready to take part in the third round of the JD Welsh Cup.
Both sides face Welsh Premier League opposition and the possibility of a cup upset has had many fans dreaming.
One of the ties of the round sees Cwmamman United travelling north to take on Welsh Premier League side Bangor City.
It is one of the biggest games in the clubs history and they will undoubtedly be looking to cause a cup upset.
They have already beaten Rhayader Town 3-1 thanks to goals from Colin Harris, Ryan Thomas and Ashley Curtis. In the second round they scored three again to beat Bridgend Street.
Curtis signed for the club at the beginning of the 2015/16 season and his previous clubs include Haverfordwest, West End and Garden Village. His powerful runs will no doubt cause problems for the Bangor defenders.
Manager Mark Snell has been behind the club’s rise to the first division of the Welsh League since taking over in 2014 and the club are now busy making improvements to their ground.
Ahead of the game on Saturday, Mark told the Herald: “Everyone involved with the club has really been looking forward to this as soon as the draw was made, yes of course we are massive underdogs and we have a lot of respect for Bangor as they are a massive force in Welsh football and have been for a long time, especially in this competition having won it the most times out of any of the domestic clubs.
“The last time they won this was back in 2010 after a retaining it for the third successive season and are due to win it again soon I’m sure, so they will be a force to stop especially under the guidance of their excellent manager Kevin Nicholson and the quality they boast throughout their squad.
“We are approaching the game understanding that we will need to be at our very best and for a lot of things to go our way to be able to achieve a cup upset, but we are not just turning up to enjoy the experience and have a Jolly over the weekend.
“We are travelling up today and staying the night just outside Bangor to allow us to prepare properly for the match. I have done a lot of homework on them as I do for every opposition.
“We are a footballing side who like to get the ball down and play, just like Bangor, who of course boast a lot more experienced players at higher levels. We will be going out to enjoy the occasion but will be fully focussed on trying to get through to the next round and create one of the biggest cup shocks in this great competitions history.”
Another big game sees Welsh League Division 2 side Ammanford taking on neighbours Carmarthen Town in what should be an excellent match.
The Old Gold have been struggling in the Premier League this season but if last Saturday’s performance against TNS is anything to go by, they could be on the up.
Ammanford will also be hoping they can cause a shock and their manager, Griff Harrison said: “We’re looking forward to it. We trained on Wednesday night and there was a good buzz about the place and we’re quietly confident.
“Carmarthen have not been in good form lately so we couldn’t have picked a better time to play them but there is no pressure on us.
“We know it is still going to be a huge task and there is a difference in quality between the two teams but the longer the game goes on if we’re still in it, the more pressure that will be on them.
“We’ve got one or two missing so we’re not at full strength but I’m more than happy with the players. The squad is made up of local boys so they will be giving it everything.”
Carmarthen sit rooted to the bottom of the Welsh Premier League but the cup games have provided some relief for the Old Gold as they previously reached the quarter finals of the MG Cup.
Manager Mark Aizlewood spoke to the Herald before the game saying: “We have a big injury crisis at the moment, last week we had two members of our staff on the bench and that problem hasn’t eased but that’s not an excuse.
“We’re looking forward to the game, it will be a really tough one, Ammanford are a good side and they will see it as their cup final. At the moment we are having a terrible season so it is a potential banana skin but there is nothing better for confidence than winning games and putting a run together and we’re hoping we can start that on Saturday.”
Ammanford have won both of their earlier games in the competition on penalties so will know what it takes should it come down to that. This game kicks off at 1:30pm.
Good luck to all of our sides involved on Saturday.
Under strength Raiders beaten
By Sian Golden at Stebonheath Park
IF anything showed up the farcical registration rules inflicted by the RFL, it was Keighley’s club record win on Saturday (Sept 15).
Ordinarily a 112-6 rout would be celebrated, but West Wales were only able to field 12 fit players and after frustrating red and yellow cards, were down to 10 by the end of the game.
There are Welsh players who would have turned out, and perhaps the RFL should allow clubs to register community lads, who have never played professionally, to make up the numbers?
New Raiders coach Kim Williams arrives this week and his presence is much needed. It’s been a long season in Llanelli and, as plenty of arguing showed during the game, it’s a camp which needs a boost and fast.
Raiders held out for three minutes before Andy Gabriel caught Benn Hardcastle’s kick to score in the corner. Hardcastle converted.
Cameron Leeming tore through the defence to ground the second try with another expert Hardcastle sideline kick.
A short kick-off led to the third as Dan Parker raced down the wing, the fourth came from a catch by Emmerson Whittell from a high kick by Hardcastle, who converted, before another short kick-off led to the fifth, this one scored by Ritchie Hawkyard and converted by Hardcastle.
Jose Kenga was next over, Leeming got his second, and James Feather scored a length of the field try. Three more Hardcastle goals made the score 46-0 on 25 minutes.
The biggest round of applause came on 33 minutes when Raiders finally broke their duck with an Alan Pope scramble to the line. Harrison Elliot converted.
There was still time for two more first half Cougars tries. Andy Gabriel was too fast for the Raiders defence, and Parker also raced over for his second. Hardcastle converted both. 58-6 at the interval.
Alfie Seeley scored the first try of the second half with Hardcastle converting, but that was before the game turned into more of a charade when Craig Lewis saw red for alleged backchat, this surely prompting Raiders’ chairman Andrew Thorne to tweet “As a chairman of a club of a club losing is hard to take but when you have 14 men on a pitch it’s an impossible task.”
Hawkyard scored in the corner four minutes later with Hardcastle converting, and former South Wales Scorpion Billy Gaylor was next. Hardcastle missed the kick but got the next try, which he improved, before Chris Cullimore scored under the sticks, Hardcastle’s goal making it 86-6.
It was good work by Seeley, who weaved his way through the defence for his second, Hardcastle’s conversion bouncing in off the posts, but the game was to finish on 12 v 10 as the referee, who was evidently finding it tough to control the game, showed Hardcastle and Dalton Desmond-Walker yellow after a lengthy fight.
Gabriel claimed his hat-trick with Gaylor slicing the ball low under the sticks. Seeley sealed his hat-trick to take Cougars to 100 with Leeming also claiming his third. Gaylor, who was closer with his second conversion attempt, got this one over.
A length of the field Hawkyard try in the final minute gave him a triple and Gaylor’s goal brought down the curtain on the farce that Oscar Wilde would have been proud of writing.
Draw made for Bowl second round
THE draw for the second round of the WRU National Bowl has been made with a number of exciting ties to look forward to.
New Dock Stars’ reward for knocking out League 3 West A opponents Llangwm is another home tie against fellow League 3 West A side Llanybydder.
Former WRU Bowl Champions Amman United were given a walkover in the first round and they will be at home in the second round having been drawn to play South Gower.
Haverfordwest, who beat Pantyffynnon 69-5 on Saturday (Sept 15) have been rewarded with another home tie against Llangadog who won 50-14 away to Pontyates in their first round game.
Aberaeron, who beat Milford Haven in the first round, face a local derby with Lampeter Town who had a walkover against Pembroke Dock Quins in the first round.
Neyland, who had also had a walkover in the first round, have been given a home tie against Carmarthenshire side Cefneithin.
The two sides met in the same stage of last season’s competition and it was Cefneithin who came out on top on that occasion winning 25-3.
Laugharne have been drawn away to Trimsaran while Betws have also been drawn away to Cwmgors.
All matches will be played on Saturday, October 6.
Selected WRU Bowl second round fixtures:
Amman Utd v South Gower
Cardigan v Nantgaredig
Cwmgors v Betws (Ammanford)
Haverfordwest v Llangadog
Lampeter Town v Aberaeron
New Dock Stars v Llanybydder
Neyland v Cefneithin
Trimsaran v Laugharne
Wanderers snatch late victory
LLANELLI Wanderers earned their second win of the season on Saturday (Sept 15) as they beat Dunvant 22-19 thanks to a late try.
The powerful Dunvant pack helped their side to a 16-12 lead at half time but the Wanderers were still very much in the game.
Josh Leeds and Jordan Evans scored the tries for Llanelli while Rhydian Morgan added the rest of their first half points with the boot.
Dunvant held on to their lead in the second half as they defended well whenever the Wanderers came forward.
However, with ten minutes to go the tables turned as the Wanderers cranked up the pressure even more.
Gruff Mathias, making his debut for the senior side having played in the youth team last season, went up for a Dunvant lineout and he knocked the ball down for Ryan Tovey who went on to score what would prove to be the winning try.
Morgan then added the extra two points and they were able to see the game out for an excellent win.
On Saturday (Sept 22), Llanelli Wanderers will look for another win when they take on Gorseinon away from home.
News7 days ago
17-year-old sentenced to 15 year minimum term after brutal axe and sword murder
News1 week ago
Parents warned after paedophile jailed
News2 weeks ago
Drefach homes plans passed
Sport4 days ago
Reds make TNS work for win
News6 days ago
Dead St John Lloyd pupil was bullied, father claims
News5 days ago
Train passengers left behind at station due to ‘farcical’ toilet situation
Sport2 days ago
Wanderers snatch late victory
Sport1 week ago
Bulls run riot against Raiders