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10-man Town send Bluebirds bottom

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Welsh Premier League Playoff

Haverfordwest County 1

Carmarthen Town 2

Screen Shot 2016-04-06 at 11.57.18CARMARTHEN continued their successful start to the Welsh Premier League second-phase programme by securing their fourth victory in five games after an impressive all-round team effort full of energy and commitment, despite having to play for over an hour with just ten men.

The hosts will be disappointed to have lost the game with something of a whimper, with Town never looking in danger of loosing even when they had a numerical disadvantage.

It now looks increasingly likely that the Bluebirds will be playing their football back in Welsh League Division One next season as they sit nine points adrift of safety with four games to play, after a difficult season back in Wales’ top flight.

From the outset the Old Gold took the initiative, monopolising possession and putting sustained pressure on the home defence with a series of quick raids. And in the 7th minute they twice went close to taking the lead.

First, Kyle Bassett saw his closerange strike blocked in front of goal by a defender – then moments later Mark Jones received the ball deep inside the penalty area and he instantly sent a fine pass back to Kieran Lewis who released a crisp 20 yard drive that drew a smart full-length save from ‘keeper Alex Connell.

Yet they were soon rewarded for this adventurous approach when on 12 minutes, after a swift exchange of passes with Jones, Lewis drifted neatly past his marker and into the penalty area before coolly drilling the ball past Connell and into the net.

Such was Town’s dominance during these opening stages that it was not until the 22nd minute that County created their first notable scoring chance – Kieran Howard raced forward into the penalty area then fired an inviting cross into the goalmouth where Luke Borelli wastefully stabbed the ball over the bar.

But this was shortly followed by the incident that would change the whole nature of this contest. Lewis, having been shown the yellow card albeit rather harshly just minutes beforehand, foolishly got involved in a needless challenge and was again similarly cautioned leading to his automatic dismissal from the field – and Carmarthen were left to play the rest of the game without their most influential player.

Unsurprisingly, the hosts straightaway began to compete better and enjoy more possession and territorial advantage. But still they were unable to make any real impression on the Old Gold defence which featured the now customary central pairing of Dwaine Bailey and Dave Vincent who remained assured and disciplined under pressure – and they received excellent support on the flanks from Jordan Knott and Dan Sheehan, playing with equal conviction and reliability. As a result, Haverfordwest failed to produce a notable effort on target during the rest of the first-half.

After the interval County continued to make good use of their numerical advantage and kept pressure on the visitors’ defence, but remained unable to penetrate it. Then, remarkably, on 53 minutes the Old Gold increased their lead following a rare breakaway. Having won a free-kick wide on the left flank, Bassett sent the ball into the packed goalmouth where Vincent leapt high above surrounding defenders and skilfully directed a glancing header beyond the reach of Connell and into the roof of the net.

However, Town’s players had no time to enjoy their two-goal advantage because straight from the re-start the hosts poured upfield and the ball reached Ricky Watts near the corner of the penalty area from where he confidently drove the ball past ‘keeper Lee Idzi.

Encouraged by that success Haverfordwest continued to press forward with increasing urgency and regularity – yet on each occasion they were unable, in any meaningful way, to breach the outstanding Old Gold defence which by now was routinely augmented by industrious midfielders Ceri Morgan, Luke Cummings and Bassett.

And behind that defensive screen the experienced Idzi commanded his area in his customary assured manner and safely dealt with numerous crosses, corners and free kicks – and the hosts’ very infrequent scoring efforts.

Meanwhile tireless strikers Mark Jones and Liam Thomas, when not also otherwise engaged in defensive activities, used their pace and mobility to good effect by keeping County defenders fully occupied with occasional counter-attacks none of which, however, produced a serious goal threat.

This magnificent team effort has now ensured that Carmarthen are mathematically safe from relegation and, given their recent performances, they remain well-placed to secure the coveted UEFA play-off qualifying spot at the end of the WPL programme.

Teams:

Haverfordwest County: Alex Connell; Ricky Watts; Sean Pemberton; Dale Griffiths; Sam Rodon; Luke Borelli; Declan Carroll; Kristian Speake; Kieran Howard; Nicky Palmer; Jason Bertorelli.

Substitutes: Greg Walters; Craig Morris; Tomas Wellington; Alfie Stottor.

Carmarthen Town: Lee Idzi; Dan Sheehan; Dwaine Bailey; Dave Vincent; Jordan Knott; Luke Cummings; Kieran Lewis; Ceri Morgan; Kyle Bassett (sub Craig Hanford 90+3); Mark Jones; Liam Thomas;

Substitutes: Luke Prosser; Jeff White; Glen Fearn; 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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