Connect with us
Advertisement
Advertisement

Sport

Ammanford ready for Newtown test

Published

on

AMMANFORD will play one of their biggest games on Saturday (Aug 10) as they take on Welsh Premier League side Newtown in the second round of the Nathaniel MG Cup.

Ahead of the game the Herald spoke to Ammanford manager Gruffydd Harrison about their preparations for the new season.

Newtown will likely provide a strong test for Gruffydd’s men but he says they are not just going there to ‘make up the numbers’ adding they will ‘give it their all’.

Ammanford booked their tie with Newtown after beating Ceredigion side Penrhyncoch 2-1 in the first round last weekend (Aug 3) and the manager is happy with what he has seen from his squad so far.

I’ve seen a hunger from every single player. We have a few new concepts to our play we wanted to implement and so far so good, said Harrison.

Everyone is motivated and clear on what we want. I’m happy with everyone and their application so far.”

Ammanford will play the 2019/20 season in the newly named JD Cymru South League and Harrison added: “It was important we retained our status in this league last season to ensure our involvement in the rebranding and so far it’s evident the professionalism has raised greatly.

It’s an exciting time to be involved with any club within this league. Every club has had to sink or swim and that will only raise the standards again.”

The club has had a shorter pre-season than usual with the first two rounds of the league cup being played and Gruff adds that his squad is in ‘good condition’

We have one slight injury concern but apart from that we are healthy and that is the most important thing for me after preseason”, he added.

Ammanford have boosted their squad with the signings of former Swansea City players Lee Trundle and Andy Robinson who Gruff says have both been great since they joined.

Gruff said: “They obviously will bring great experience and quality, but they understand they are part of Ammanford AFC and that’s the most important aspect of our club.

They have been great since arriving and will be great assets to go alongside an already outstanding group of players.

They will also help us within the wider community to establish greater links as we aim to further establish the club within our area.”

Gruff added that the club is not planning on making any more signings before the season starts stating: “I am very happy with the depth within the squad and everyone will play their part this season. We won’t be adding any more before the window closes and I don’t expect anyone to leave.”

Finally the Herald asked about Ammanford’s goals for the new season and Manager Gruff explained: “As they are every season, on the field we want to win every fixture we play in. If we can’t we’ll work out why and try to improve.

We are working hard to get better and better and that needs to translate into wins and points. How hard we work will collerate with the outcome of football matches were involved in and consequently our league position.

Off the field I want us to become a community hub and further promote our commitment to the Jac Lewis foundation in relation to mental health awareness.”

Saturday’s game in Newtown will kick off at 2:30pm with the club laying on buses for supporters wishing to attend.

Ammanford’s first game of the new League season takes place a week later (Aug 17) as they travel to Taffs Well.

Their first home game of the season sees them take on Swansea Uni FC on Friday, August 27, kick off at 7:30pm.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sport

Ammanford suffer heaviest defeat

Published

on

AFTER two successive victories, Ammanford crashed to their heaviest defeat of the season at St Helen’s, losing to Swansea by a humiliating 240 runs on Saturday (July 24).

Swansea must have regretted their decision to bat first when Daniel Roberts had them at 12 for 2.

But that regret was transitory as their middle order went on to build a massive total of 295 for 7.

Half centuries came from the bats of Gareth Haydn (73), Osian Webber (66) and Adnan Ghori (56), whilst Hasan Hayat came painfully close with 49.

Daniel Roberts carried the Ammanford bowling with 4 for 51 from his 10 overs.

With several first team regulars missing, Ammanford’s batsmen had no answer to the bowling of Kazi Szymanski (5-19), Waqas Tanveer (3-27) and Brad Wadlan (2-4).

The only resistance came from Josef Davies (25) as the visitors crumbled to 55 all out in 14 overs.

Ammanford will want to forget this episode as they fight to get themselves clear of the pack at the foot of Premier One.

Seconds lose by seven wickets

Ammanford seconds lost by seven wickets to table-toppers Carmarthen Wanderers at the Park on Saturday.

Batting first, Ammanford were all out for 133, late resistance to the Wanderers bowling coming from Llyr Morgan (22) and Sion Evans (21).

Liam Rogers was Carmarthen’s chief wicket taker with 3 for 24.

Despite losing a wicket without a run on the board, Carmarthen’s middle order patiently stood their ground and took 32 overs to achieve their target for the loss of three wickets.

Opener Giles Thomas made 47 while Joshua Thomas was unbeaten on 49.

Continue Reading

Sport

Two late Thomas goals seal remarkable Cwm comeback

Published

on

TEN-MAN Cwmamman United staged a late rally to break South Gower hearts when captain Ryan Thomas popped up in the 78th and 90th minutes with two opportunist goals to see Cwm progress to the next round of the Welsh Cup.

It had been a match of few clear chances with neither keeper being challenged until much later in the game.

It started slowly and in their first competitive match of the season Cwm struggled to establish a pattern of play while their opponents who were playing their 3rd competitive match settled down quickly playing some neat football.

For Cwm Gareth Howarth and Elian Evans’ experience at the back was settling the side while Sean Howells continuously tried to seek options for the Blues in midfield.

In the 32nd minute with neither side really creating much a South Gower free kick was perfectly swung across the Cwm goal where centre back Morris flung himself between two Cwm defenders to put it beyond Cwm keeper Kyle Marsh.

The second half continued in the same vein as the first with both sides struggling in the final third of the pitch. The only noteworthy incident was a piledriver by Cwm’s Craig Gordon form outside the box spectacularly tipped by South Gower keeper Sam Williams.

The turning point strangely came with the sending off of Cwm’s Ryan Hurlow in the 55th minute. Flying down the wing he managed to leap over a dangerous incoming tackle but in venting his frustration at the player he incurred the wrath of the referee for raising his hands and suffered a straight red card.

This changed Cwm’s approach and a more urgent faster style increased both possession and frequency of attacks.

Craig Gordon and Geraint Rees were now seeing more of the ball and subs Scott Thomas and Lewis Byng were stretching the tiring Gower defence.  You knew something was coming and in the 78th minute Ryan Thomas took his opportunity well to equalise.

With penalties on the spectators’ minds and Cwm continuing the pressure in the 90th minute a long free kick into the box was half cleared, headed back across to Thomas who calmly slotted it home to great celebrations.

South Gower could justifiably feel unlucky after such a solid performance but it is Cwmamman who went through to the next round.

Continue Reading

Sport

Old Gold denied win by late penalty

Published

on

Pontypridd Town 1-1 Carmarthen Town

CARMARTHEN TOWN, since their relegation from the Cymru Premier League, had been waiting for the first opportunity to begin their campaign to restore their top tier status – and, having taken the lead late in this match against a competitive Pontypridd side, it seemed that they had made a perfect start.

But, sadly, deep into added time the home side were awarded a hotly disputed penalty and the Old Gold had to settle for a share of the points in this their first ever Cymru South League match.

However even before the start of the match the gathering of Town supporters were delighted to see the presence of a very familiar face in the pitch-side dug-out, namely that of Mark Aizlewood who had just been appointed Head Coach – a role similar to that which he had held on three earlier occasions often coinciding with times of some notable success for the Club.

In the early stages of the game it quickly became clear that these two teams were quite evenly balanced but while the play switched quickly from end to end, no serious scoring chances emerged.  At the heart of the visitors’ defence Lee Surman and Lewis Rocke were strong and assured while on the flanks Michael George and Corey Saunders gave them firm support – goal-keeper Scott James was never troubled during this spell.

At the other end of the pitch strikers Liam Thomas and Noah Daley could make little early impression on the Pontypridd defence, prominent within which were long-term Town defenders Dave Vincent and Jordan Knott.

But eventually the game livened up and on 19 minutes the first notable scoring opportunity arose for the hosts when Sam Johnson, from the corner of the penalty area, released a fierce angled drive that James watched carefully slip wide of the post.  Then moments later Aiden Lewis struck a stunning 30 yard free-kick that flew comfortably over the bar.

Pontypridd continued this spell of pressure when the ball reached Luke Gullick inside the penalty area – he turned sharply then fired a crisp volley that James turned aside with a smart reflex safe.  Then on 26 minutes Lewis threatened the visitors’ goal once more when he dispatched a promising 20 yard strike that James denied with a stunning full-length save.

The Old Gold at last managed to threaten the home goal in the 34th minute when Jordan Vickers sent a fine pass through to Thomas just inside the penalty area – from a very sharp angle Town’s all-time top goal-scorer drove the ball beyond the reach of ‘keeper Morgan Davies but, sadly, into the side-netting.

Yet the final action of the first-half was at the other end of the pitch – after 40 minutes Lee Baldock fired a long free-kick into the crowded penalty area where Drew Fahiya struck a fierce volley that James carefully watched safely fly over the bar.

After the interval Carmarthen began far more positively but apart from a Rocke header on 60 minutes that flew just over the bar following Keiran Howard’s corner they had nothing to show for their efforts – the hosts failed to achieve even that meagre “success”.

However as the match seemed to be drifting to a goal-less conclusion an unexpected frenzy of activity erupted.

On 88 minutes Thomas released a fierce drive that struck the post and the ball rebounded out – it was promptly returned into the goalmouth where Daley, reacting quicker than several other players, stabbed it into the net from close-range.

That setback seemed to galvanise the hosts into frenzied activity and as the match drifted into added time they were rewarded when the referee decided that Vickers’ clumsy challenge on the edge of the penalty area merited a spot-kick.

Baldock stepped forward and fired the ball beyond James’ reach and into the corner of the net.  A few minutes later the referee blew the final whistle.

Town’s next fixture is against Llantwit Major on Tuesday, July 27, k/o 7.30pm at Richmond Park, while on the following Saturday, July 31, k/o 2.30pm Risca United visit Richmond Park – both are Cymru South League matches.

Continue Reading

Trending

FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK