Connect with us
Advertisement
Advertisement

Sport

Rugby record as Hendy beat Athletic

Published

on

By Jonathan Twigg, photos by Sue Bows

HENDY remained top of the Division 2 West table with a bonus point 28-17 victory over Carmarthen Athletic, in the only league game to survive the weather on Saturday (Mar 3).

In a year which will see them celebrate their 125th Anniversary Season with a gala dinner at the Strady Park Hotel on Saturday (June 1) promotion remains a priority for the coaching team of Dorian Jones, Chris Morgan and the Shingler brothers, Aaron and Steven.

The icing on the cake would be to pip challengers Whitland to the title, their showdown game scheduled for Saturday (May 5) at Hendy but there is a lot of rugby to be played before that date.

The micro climate that hovered over the village on Saturday allowed the aptly named groundsman Steve ‘Snowy’ Williams to perform wonders in ensuring the game was played. The ground resembled conditions akin to an early season friendly, the pitch able to take a stud but was hard in places.

Snowy, a local landscape gardener had his work cut out to maintain the surface to allow it to go ahead, after close dialogue with Llangennach based referee Jack Boswell and East Wales based match referee Lee Gibbs.

Efforts rewarded: Hendy forwards reaped the rewards in 28-17 victory (Pic Sue Bows)

The Beast from the East certainly wasn’t Gibbs and once the game was under way the home side broke the deadlock through centre Josh Davies, who benefitted from the silky hands of full back Jake Newman putting him into space to score under the posts.

Versatile player Josh Batcup, playing at outside half as regular Rhydian Morris was unable to travel due to the snow in Cardiff slotted over the conversion. The move started with off the top line out ball from second row Rhodri Hughes who alongside prop Ben Batcup had outstanding games, not only at the set piece but also around the park with their tackling and tracking back.

Such play was reminiscent of former flanker Max Easey who tragically passed away recently, the two sides showing impeccable respect for his life before kick-off, the first opportunity Hendy have had to pull on the ‘jersey’ in seven weeks to acknowledge such an emotional tribute.

Athletic full back Robbie Thomas skated over to equalise the scores after winger Tom Gravell kicked the conversion, before Newman intercepted the ball on the ten metre line to race clear and just manage to touchdown despite pressure from his opposite number Thomas.

Gravell kicked a penalty to reduce the deficit to two points at 12-10 before the well drilled home set piece set up two more tries from driving line outs. Hughes was again the key component in the tries, the first to boiler house partner Ashley Banford and the second to live wire flanker Matthew Wotherspoon to establish a 22-10 half time lead.

The Athletic scored the only try of the second half through Marcus Francis-Curtis converted by Gravell to bring the game back within a score, which was a just reward for the physical and direct play from the red and blacks.

Hendy skipper Chris Bowen had led his side well in the second half, kicking for touch to set up the game deep in the opposition half and capitalising on the mistakes made, eventually opting for two long range penalties from Newman to ensure the victory.

Guest speaker Scott Quinnell will have a lot to talk about at the gala dinner and the situation surrounding the only game to be played, although the Athletic are no strangers to being involved in games when everything else is postponed. In 1985 their fixture survived the frost as did the only other game played involving Cardiff RFC.

Chris Morgan, Hendy coach said: “We are delighted with the result, with the conditions difficult, with the hard ground and late afternoon rain making it difficult for the players. We have kept the players spirits high but missing games for such a long period was bound to leave us rusty.

“Opportunities arose in the second half, but we didn’t capitalise on the territory we had fought for, especially as the Athletic were tenacious at the breakdown and probably edged the play on the gain line.”

Hendy make the trip to Llanybydder on Saturday (Mar 10), whom they defeated in the reverse fixture 38-6. Morgan has an ‘expectation for another physical encounter, against a side whose bottom of the table position doesn’t give a true reflection of their ability’.

The Athletic meanwhile welcome local rivals Tumble to Ystrad Fields hoping to record a double over the Magpies after the 24-13 victory in November and in doing so consolidate their position in the top four with six games of the season remaining.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Sport

Ammanford upset Penybont to reach MG Cup quarter finals

Published

on

Report by Ian Parfitt

AMMANFORD produced arguably the shock of the third round in the MG Nathaniel Cup with a 2-1 victory at Penybont, who currently sit third in the Cymru Premier League, on Tuesday night (Sept 20).

Penybont started the game well and looked dangerous with ex Ammanford player Kai Whitmore calling the shots.

Ammanford however were also playing some neat football themselves and this was quickly becoming a competitive contest.

Ammanford took the lead in the 28th minute when Brett Enoch took advantage of a moment of calamity in the Penybont defence to fire home.

As expected Penybont increased the pressure on the Ammanford goal in search of an equaliser but Ammanford held firm to go into the interval ahead.

Kyle Marsh in particular having a fine game in the Ammanford goal. Ammanford fans would have been expecting a long 45 minutes after the break but it only took a minute for Penybont to find the equaliser, Mael Davies scoring with a firm header.

Penybont were hungry for more goals and looked especially dangerous from the flanks. The Ammanford defence, who were superb throughout held firm under a barrage of high balls into the box.

Ammanford were also keen to get a second and looked dangerous on the counter attack, both Jordan Langley and Callum Silcox going agonisingly close to restoring the visitors’ lead.

The Ammanford defence continued to form a formidable wall at the back which Penybont were unable to breach.

This fantastic rearguard action was rewarded in the 81st minute when Callum Thomas scored what turned out to be the winner for Ammanford, running through on goal and producing a composed finish to slot the ball past Penybont keeper Alex Pennock.

Ammanford players continued to put their bodies on the line to preserve the lead, epitomised by Tom Pratt who took one on the head in the six yard box.

Lee Trundle spurned a glorious chance to make the game safe for Ammanford with a couple of minutes remaining but it mattered not as the final whistle produced jubilant scenes in the away camp.

Ammanford progress to the Fourth round on what was a glorious night for the club.

Photos by Lawrence Molloy
Continue Reading

Sport

Strong Ammanford performance seals Cup win over Whitland

Published

on

AMMANFORD got their Division 1 Cup campaign off to an excellent start on Saturday (Sept 17) as they beat Whitland 42-13.

Ammanford built up a 17-3 lead and increased that further to 8-29 before pulling away in the closing stages.

Geraint Jones scored a penalty for Whitland and unconverted tries from Gino Setaro and Lewis Gibby followed.

Captain Alex Davies was named as Ammanford’s man of the match as he lead his side to a bonus point win.

The scrum half was among the try scorers as were Morgan Plimmer, Rhodri Jones, Liam Smith, Carwyn Richards, Mathew Lemon and Tiaan Evans.

Ryan Williams added four conversions and one penalty for the visitors.

The next round of Cup fixtures is scheduled for October 15. Ammanford host Newcastle Emlyn while Whitland travel to Tondu.

Ammanford return to action in League 1 West Central on Saturday, September 24 as they host Birchgrove.

Whitland are also back in league action in League 1 West as they visit Pembroke.

Continue Reading

Sport

Howell’s strike takes the points for Cwm

Published

on

CWMAMMAN United earned their first three points of the season with an impressive all round performance as they overcame Cardiff Darconians through a sublime Gwion Howell finish at Grenig park on Saturday (Sept 17).

Cwm started on the front foot and their passing and movement was excellent and they twice came close early with Gwion Howell clipping the outside of the post while Sion Dafydd Williams pounced on a back pass but could just not quite get enough leverage on his attempt.

They then saw a 25th min goal by Williams ruled out for a tight offside. With Charlie Davies and Scott Jewell having strong games in the middle of the park Cwm looked the likeliest to score but there was a real scare when a defensive slip required a superb save from Kai Rees in the Cwm goal to keep it goalless.

Kyle Ashford and Keiran Richards continued to run hard at the Dracs defence causing problems but the first half remained goalless.

The strong second half push back that Cwm expected from the Cardiff side didn’t materialise and Cwm continued to have the better of the play. Grant Rees and Callum Dougal were strong at the heart of the defence while Leon Coucher and the ever threatening Cory Saunders were launching attacks from out wide.

Eventually the goal came when some neat interplay saw Howell with his back to goal and the ball at his feet. A superb turn moved the ball to one side and he then fired it across the keeper to the opposite corner..

Great celebrations before Cwm immediately settled determined to see this one through. With Davies continuing to push his team forward and subs Alex Giardelli and Harrison Thomas stretching the Dracs side Cwm saw it through without too much worry.

An excellent performance of which manager Paul Lewis said: “Great to get that first win with the boys who applied our team plan superbly today and they really deserved that result.”

Cwm now look forward to another challenge as they travel to play near neighbours Garden village on Friday evening (Sept 23).

Continue Reading

Trending

FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK