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Reds make TNS work for win

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NOBODY said it was going to be easy, and the Reds continue to find that life in the Welsh Premier League is a continuous learning curve with each match throwing up different problems, particularly when players are not available due to suspensions, injury or unavailability.

This proved to be the case with the visit of a full-time TNS side on Friday (Sept 14), with the hosts stretched to field a team capable of standing up for the inevitable onslaught and ready for a backs-to-the-wall defensive effort.

To their credit, they achieved this aim to some extent, and the cricket-score forecasts by some pessimists did not materialise, although the visitors always seemed capable of turning their attacking prowess up a few notches if needed.

The Reds also have goalkeeper Oliver Davies to thank for a number of good saves, while the woodwork also played its part, twice coming to the rescue when the Saints got behind the home rearguard.

Photos by Darren Harries

While Paul Harrison in the visitors` goal was a virtual spectator for large swathes of the game, he was the first to be called into action early on when he was forced to turn over a well struck free kick by James Loveridge.

That effort was about as close the Reds got to a breakthrough, as from then on their opponents dominated proceedings with constant attacks, spreading diagonal passes to either flank, causing endless problems for the overworked home defence.

It took just 9 minutes for the lead to be established when a slick move ended with Aeron Edwards slotting his finish beyond Davies.

This early success confirmed the pattern of play for the remainder of the half, with Daniel Redmond seeing Davies keep out his strike at the expense of a corner, while a cross from the left flank found Simon Spender at the far post, but his header rebounded off the post to safety.

When the home side were in possession of the ball, which was not too often, they were careless with their passing, conceding it back to their opponents far too easily.

A surging run by Adrian Cieslewicz took him into the home box before it was halted by a saving tackle, while the upright again came to the Reds` aid when Redmond unleashed a 30 yard rocket.

The same player then had his deflected shot on target turned around by Davies, but with the half time interval approaching, it appeared as if the home side would go in just trailing by the solitary goal.

However, with literally seconds remaining, Jon Routledge got to the byline before cutting the ball into the goalmouth, where it appeared to come off Reds` defender, Chris Thomas, and past Davies for an own goal.

With their task of taking something out of the game now made even harder, the hosts were subjected to more of the kind of relentless pressure they had endured in the first half following the restart, with Davies again standing between the Saints and further goals, denying Dean Ebbe when he was through.

A long range attempt by Tom Holland was fractionally off target when the visitors again pushed forward, before a rare home sortie arose from a Chris Jones pass which sent Loveridge clear, bur Harrison was quickly off his line to clear the threat.

A close range volley from Kurtis Byrne from a Routledge delivery whistled just over the top, and Davies again showed his mettle when he pushed clear a shot by Routledge, and then turned over a further attempt by the same player.

At the close, the Reds would be thankful the final tally was not higher, the only consolation being that they will not face teams of this calibre every week, although there appear to be no easy games at this level.

The Reds face the long trip to Caernarfon Town on Saturday (Sept 22), with a coach leaving Stebonheath at 8am.

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Mumbles win well against Ammanford seconds

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AMMANFORD seconds suffered a heavy 125 run defeat at the hands of Mumbles at Marespool.

Winning the toss, Ammanford invited Mumbles to bat first, and a terrific 188 run partnership for the second wicket, featuring Ben Jones (94) and Stuart Seaton (77), helped the home team to a healthy 221 for 4 in 45 overs.

Several Ammanford batsmen got into double figures but none were able to stay long enough to make any impression on the run chase. Eirian Morgan top-scored with 25, but the Ammanford innings finished disappointingly on 96 all out.

Gethin Morgan and Phil Roche each took three wickets for Mumbles.

Thirds beaten by Landore

Ammanford thirds travelled to Landore only to lose their match by 50 runs.

Ammanford skipper Carl Griffiths put Landore in to bat, and the home team scored 148 for 9. Landore
skipper Terry Summerfield top-scored with 33.

Ammanford’s Tom Davies was chief wicket-taker with 4 for 38.

Despite a solid 30 from opener and man-of-the-match Tom Davies, Ammanford failed to get anywhere near the required target and folded their innings on 98 inside 34 overs.

The defeat dropped them out of the top half of division six on the SWCA.

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Cwmamman United Juniors host end of season event

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CWMAMMAN United juniors held their end of season event at Clwb Godre’r Mynydd Ddu Glanamman.

As they celebrated throughout the day with their different age groups from Under 6 to Under 14 it looked as if almost every child in the Cwm had attended at some point.

The Juniors section at the club has grown to around 150 children over the last couple of years and with a dedicated and enthusiastic group of committee, coaches and volunteers behind them the club is excitedly anticipating further growth.

A fantastic time was had by all with all age groups proudly having their moment in the sun.

Robert Griffiths the Clubs Junior Chairman said: “I have to thank all our fantastic people at the club that get the kids out playing whether sorting games, coaching, fund raising or organising events such as our club parties and awards such as these.

“We continiue to grow and if your child would like to be part of a safe, healthy and fun environment they are most welcome here.”

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Depleted Ammanford beaten by seven wickets

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A DEPLETED Ammanford lost by seven wickets to Bridgend Town in a rain affected match at windswept Newbridge Fields on Satuday (Jun 25).

With the start delayed by over an hour because of rain, the match was reduced to 39 overs before a ball was bowled, and the toss immediately became the crucial factor in deciding the game’s outcome.

Bridgend won it and, predictably enough, put Ammanford in to bat.

The writing was on the wall as the visitors lost two wickets for 9 runs on an unpredictable wicket which was one of the first bowler-friendly tracks encountered this season.

Only four batters reached double figures as wickets fell at regular intervals. Top scorer was 14 year old wicket-keeper Gruffudd Owen (19no) who took the game to the visitors and looked capable of scoring many more had he not run out of partners.

Ammanford were all out for 90 inside 30 overs.

Tea was taken early as more heavy rain swept across Newbridge Fields, but unfortunately for Ammanford the sun made a reappearance and play eventually resumed.

The Bridgend batters did not have it all their own way, quickly losing both openers to opening bowler Owen Davies.

Davies removed a further wicket in a good spell of 3 for 15, but Thomas Cogbill (43no) and Luke Humphries (18) saw Bridgend safely home without further trouble inside 24 overs.

Next week, Ammanford welcome second placed Swansea to the Park, the memory of their 700+ run clash at St Helen’s still fresh in their minds.

Thirds beat Pontardawe by a single run

Ammanford thirds beat Pontardawe by a single run in a rain adjusted match at the Rec.

Batting first, Ammanford reached 132 all out, thanks mainly to their captain Carl Griffiths (41) and Dafydd Wyn Jones (21).

Rain meant that Pontardawe’s reply was restricted to just 16 overs, during which they had to score 53 runs.

They came very close, but two wickets each from Oliver Pallot and Iwan Matthews interrupted their progress and they fell short by a single run, finishing on 51 for 5.

The victory moved Ammanford into the top half of SWCA’s Division 6.

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