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Bargoed triumph in the mud

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Newcastle Emlyn 6

Bargoed 33

BARGOED showed their true Premiership material with this comprehensive victory over Emlyn on Saturday.

Recent results had given the Emlyn supporters hope that maybe they could pull off a surprise victory against one of the top four sides in the Championship. It was not to be as the visitors from the Rhymney Valley put on an impressive display of forward power as they steamrollered their way to victory.

That the game was played at all was a credit to the hard working Newcastle Emlyn committee who spent the whole morning clearing the rain off the Dol Wiber pitch.

Even then the pitch still resembled a mud bath and both sides deserve a huge vote of thanks for the entertaining game they served up for the large crowd.

The difference in the end was the size and experience of the Bargoed team, inspirationally led by their hooker Leigh Meads.

Emlyn, in fact, started the more positive of the two sides and took the early lead courtesy of two penalty goals kicked firstly by Shaun Leonard and then Dan Davies. They did have two other opportunities to add to their total but a cross kick by Leonard just bounced tantalising out of centre Teifion Davies’ grasp to end up in touch.

Bargoed came more into the game using their powerful centre Lewis Prothero to carry the ball up from scrums, and his strong running caused the Emlyn defence problems all afternoon.

Their opening try came rather unexpectedly and slightly against the run of play. From a scrum just inside the Emlyn half the Bargoed scrum half Mathew Hutchins went on a run, managed to elude three tacklers, and fed the supporting full back Jordan Purcell who crossed for the opening try, converted by Mathew Hurley.

The greater weight and experience of the Bargoed forwards was beginning to tell as they decided to tighten up their game and reverted to some excellent driving mauls from the line out, which Emlyn were slow to defend.

They began to exert a great deal of pressure on the Emlyn line and the red and whites were forced to defend desperately. The pressure eventually led to the ever alert Bargoed hooker Leigh Meads pouncing on a loose ball, which slipped out of the side of a ruck, to score a try converted by outside half Hurley.

Emlyn came back at Bargoed with a series of storming runs by their forwards as they went through ruck after ruck against a determined and organised visitors defence. A superbly weighted cross kick by Shaun Leonard forced Bargoed to concede a line out five metres from their line. For some inexplicable reason Emlyn decided to throw the ball to the back of the line, almost in defiance of the conditions. Unfortunately they did not win the ball and Bargoed were able to clear their line.

This led to a second line out on the five metres line and, when the Emlyn drive was halted, scrum half Mike Jones moved the ball out to his backs. A lovely three-quarter move saw full back Shaun Leonard time his entry into the line to perfection and looked certain to score but the Bargoed covering winger just managed to bring him down short of the line, on a dry day Leonard would have scored.

The second half was dominated by the visitors and Emlyn found it extremely difficult to get out of their own half.

Bargoed, with their experienced forwards bossing the game, placed the Emlyn line under a great deal of pressure as they went searching for the bonus point win.

After twelve minutes they extended their lead with, predictably, a push over try from a scrum credited to their number eight Ross Coombs.

In desperation Emlyn tried moving the ball from deep inside their twenty two metre area and conceded a penalty at the breakdown. Bargoed opted for a scrum and the red and whites, in their desperation to defend their line, conceded a penalty try which the excellent referee Simon Mills had no hesitation in awarding and outside half Hurley added the extra points.

After twenty minutes Emlyn did get out of their half and a quick throw in to a line out by replacement number eight Luke Kendall to Shaun Leonard saw the full back turn and look to outpace the defence but they were able to get back and the Emlyn player was brought down inches from the line.

The Bargoed pack took control again, and the remainder of the half, belonged to the visitors. With their scrum half Mathew Hutchins controlling matters it was a credit to the Emlyn defence that they managed to restrict them to just one more try. That came courtesy of centre Darren Humphries who latched on to a long pass to brush past a couple of Emlyn defenders to score a try converted by Hurley.

The skill levels on both sides were extremely high but Bargoed’s greater strength and experience ensured that, in these conditions, there was only going to be one winner and they look certain to attain Premiership status next season.

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Sport

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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