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Town’s play off bid off to a flier

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x2 Town celebrate: After White’s late winner (Pic. Rob Wilkins)

x2 Town celebrate: After White’s late winner (Pic. Rob Wilkins)

Port Talbot 0

Carmarthen Town 2

CARMARTHEN, after two postponements, belatedly got their Welsh Premier League second phase programme under way with an encouraging high-tempo performance full of energy and commitment to secure a well deserved victory over local rivals Port Talbot, their second consecutive success at the GenQuip Stadium in the space of just seven weeks.

From the outset the game quickly developed into an open, end-to-end affair but initially both defences looked quite comfortable under pressure and no goal threat ensued. It was not until the 11th minute that the first notable chance arose when Lewis Harling, from inside his own half, instigated a flowing move down the left flank which finished with Keiran Lewis threading the ball across the edge of the penalty area where Harling, having continued his run, struck a crisp drive that ‘keeper Steve Cann resisted with a full-length save.

The Old Gold went even closer to opening the score on 15 minutes when Kyle Bassett sent an inviting corner into the packed goalmouth to find Dave Vincent who rose above surrounding defenders but saw his firm header clip the top of the bar and go safely behind. Then after 25 minutes Lewis dispatched a curling 30 yard free-kick that flew narrowly too high.

During this spell, and for the remainder of the first-half, the home side were unable to produce a single shot on target or even close to it – such was the dominance of Town’s defence at the heart of which stood Vincent who, in his first full match since moving from Port Talbot last month and clearly relishing the opportunity of facing his former team-mates, produced a masterclass of assured and highly-effective defending.

His central defensive partnership with Dwaine Bailey, who displayed his customary strength in the air and on the ground, ensured that the threat normally posed by the hosts’ experienced twin strike-force was emphatically neutralised, while on the flanks full-backs Dan Sheehan and Jordan Knott performed with similar success. Meanwhile ‘keeper Lee Idzi only really became involved when dealing with occasional corners and free-kicks, all accomplished with his usual confidence and safe handling.

Ahead of this formidable rearguard the industrious midfield trio of Harling, Lewis and Ceri Morgan eagerly provided a further layer of valuable defensive support whenever necessary, while taking every opportunity to drive the Old Gold forward on the counterattack – and here they found willing assistance from frontmen Mark Jones, Liam Thomas and Bassett who, with their pace and movement, kept the home defenders fully occupied.

After the interval Carmarthen made a positive start when in the first minute Jones moved in from the left wing then slid the ball across to Thomas inside the penalty area but he saw his angled shot deflected by a defender just wide of the far post.

However the Steelmen were now creating more of a threat, breaking forward with greater pace and urgency. And on 49 minutes they produced their first genuine scoring opportunity of the match when Kurtis March made a strong run down the right-wing before firing the ball into the goalmouth only for Martin Rose, from a good position, to scoop it over the bar.

Yet it was the visitors who at last broke the deadlock on 68 minutes. Lewis, a particularly influential figure in Town’s midfield throughout the game, embarked on a dazzling run into the heart of the home defence but was brought down just outside the penalty area – he then fired the resultant freekick with perfect precision over the defensive ‘wall’ and into the roof of the net leaving Cann well beaten.

Immediately Port Talbot intensified their attacks in search of an equaliser but the Old Gold defence, by now featuring Luke Prosser who for the last 30 minutes proved to be an able replacement for the injured Bailey, remained strong and disciplined. Although they had to withstand a few worrying goalmouth scrambles, they limited the hosts to just one recognisable scoring effort when Luke Bowen, on 79 minutes, attempted a longrange shot that Idzi watched fly wide of the post.

Yet in the closing stages the Steelmen became increasingly vulnerable to counter-attacks and in the 87th minute a slick move down the left flank finished with substitute Jeff White, from wide on the edge of the penalty area, setting up a fine chance for Morgan but his fierce 20 yard drive went narrowly wide of the post. However, moments later Town made their victory secure when Lewis embarked on a surging run through the midfield then sent an astute pass forward to White who from a sharp angle neatly slid the ball past Cann and into the net.

These three valuable points extend Carmarthen’s lead over tenth placed Port Talbot and after the other week-end fixtures they now stand a healthy twelve points above the WPL relegation places – and in the other direction the gap to Bangor, currently occupying the coveted end-of-season seventh place has narrowed to just two points. Clearly, more performances like this would be very welcome.

Team:

Lee Idzi; Dan Sheehan; Dwaine Bailey (sub Luke Prosser 61); Dave Vincent; Jordan Knott; Lewis Harling; Kieran Lewis; Ceri Morgan; Kyle Bassett; Mark Jones (sub Jeff White 80); Liam Thomas (sub Glen Fearn 90) Unused Sub: James Kirkwood

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Canolfan Carwyn Sports Centre and Brynamman Lido to be transferred to a community groups

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A MULTI- SPORTS facility, at the heart of the Gwendraeth Valley, has been taken over by a local sports group, the Baton Twirlers.

The management of Canolfan Carwyn Sports Centre, which is owned by Carmarthenshire County, has been transferred to the Baton Twirlers Association Cymru (BTAC) via a lease agreement and will allow the public to continue to use the facilities at the centre.

Whilst Canolfan Carwyn Sports Centre is now the official home of BTAC its facilities are available for the local community and sports groups to be used.

An official reopening of the Centre, which bears the name of one of the Gwendraeth Valley’s most famous sons, under the new management of the BTAC was held on Sunday, October 2.

Speaking at the event, Jessica Shore Director of the Baton Twirlers Association Cymru (BTAC) said:

“We are thrilled to have worked with Carmarthenshire County Council to secure this sports centre on behalf of the local community and it’s a pleasure to welcome the public here today. We are looking forward to working with and hosting various community and sports groups at the Carwyn James Sports Centre.

“It also was very important to us to provide a home for baton twirling in Wales, and we will make great use of the excellent facilities here.”

Cllr. Gareth John, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Leisure, Culture and Tourism said “This is a great success story for the BTAC, the Gwendraeth Valley and the council as we have secured the future of the Carwyn James Sports Centre for the local community.

I would like to thank Baton Twirlers Association Cymru for their work and enthusiasm during the process of transferring management of the Sports Centre to them, as a community group, and I wish them the very best for the future.”

Plans approved to transfer management of Brynamman Lido

On Monday, October 3, the council’s Cabinet approved plans to lease the Brynamman Lido, which is held in trust by the Carmarthenshire County Council, to Brynamman Lido Limited under its asset transfer programme.

Under the proposed lease, Brynamman Lido Limited will take over the management of the lido with the intention to reopen the swimming pool for sporting, recreational and leisure activities.

Following the approval of the plans by the Cabinet, Cllr. Gareth John commented:

“We are pleased to be working with the local group in Brynamman to transfer the management and maintenance of the lido to the community.

“The transfer of this asset will allow Brynamman Lido Ltd to apply for funding via grants that would not be available to the County Council, and we will continue to work with them and provide support along the journey to reopening the lido to the community.”

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Latest recruit to Llandeilo’s Ashmole & Co team ‘converts’ his spare time into being a rugby referee

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Ashmole & Co have scored a try with their newest Trainee Accountant. The firm is delighted to announce that Aled Jones has recently started working for the successful accountancy team in the Llandeilo office.

Aled, who lives in Pontyberem, is a community rugby referee in his spare time. He referees senior rugby games on Saturdays and Junior rugby games on Sundays including cup matches. He is also involved in the Scarlets Cup Final at Parc y Scarlets and the Carmarthenshire cup finals.

Before joining Ashmole & Co Aled was a Personal Banker with Barclays Bank for five years. He studied AAT Level three at Coleg Sir Gar. Aled went to primary school in Pontyberem and secondary school in Ysgol y Gwendraeth.

Day to day with Ashmole & Co, Aled prepares and inputs clients’ sales and purchase invoices onto the accounting software; completes clients’ VAT returns and assists senior members of the team with the preparation of accounts. The most rewarding part of the job for Aled is hearing that the clients are happy.

Welcoming Aled to the team, Ceri Llwyd, Partner in the Llandeilo Ashmole & Co office, said, “We are delighted that Aled has joined our team in Carmarthenshire. He has fitted in well and is a pleasure to work with. I’ve told my rugby mad sons that they have to behave now when they play rugby on a Sunday in case Aled is their referee! It is great that he gives up his spare time to help local rugby clubs in this way.”
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Aled said, “I am grateful to Ashmole and Co, who are one of the most established and largest teams of chartered, certified accountants and auditors in south and west Wales, to give me this opportunity.”

Ashmole & Co offer financial support to a significant number of junior and professional sports teams across south Wales. The Llandeilo office has recently shown its support to Llandeilo RFC by contributing towards new tops for the juniors.

Ceri added, “As a rural firm that works with businesses in the area it is a pleasure for us to be able to lend our support to local sports teams.”

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Llangennech prove too strong for Penclawdd

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LLANGENNECH earned their fourth win in as many matches on Saturday (Oct 22) as they beat Penclawdd 38-10.

Jordan Saunders got the scoring underway with the first try of the game and Thomas Davies added the extras.

Penclawdd then levelled the scoring with a try from Daniel John Guarneri and Marcus Brown added the extras.

It remained 7-7 until half time with conditions proving tricky for both sides.

In the second half, Aaron Howles got the try to put Llangennech ahead but the conversion was missed.

Joseph Hutchings then extended the visitors’ lead with their third try and Davies added the extras to take the score to 7-19.

Penclawdd then responded with a penalty from Brown as the home side looked to get back into the game.

However, Llangennech soon had their fourth try and a bonus point as Howles touched down for his second try of the game and Davies added the extras.

Louis Rees then scored an unconverted try before replacement Hefin Jones went over for Llangennech’s sixth try, converted by Davies.

On Saturday, October 29, Penclawdd travel to Aberystwyth for their second game in the Division 1 Cup.

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