Dafabet Welsh Premier League
Aberystwyth Town 3
Haverfordwest County 1
ABERYSTWYTH TOWN returned to the summit of the Dafabet WPL Play Off Conference on Friday (Apr 8) with a very important 3-1 home win over already relegated Haverfordwest County.
Man of the Match Craig Williams opened the scoring for Aber on 10 minutes, only for Luke Borelli to level the scores six minutes later. The Black and Greens improved after the break and Williams created the chance for Chris Venables to lob a second on the hour, before sending in a corner, which Rhys Griffiths headed goal bound, for Sean Pemberton to complete the scoring with a headed own goal on 71 minutes.
On a drizzly night a pre match Club Photo ensured a decent turnout of 404, and a lively Friday night atmosphere at Park Avenue. Visitors Haverfordwest created the first chance when Borelli’s ball in from the left fell for stand in centre forward Sean Pemberton, but he could only tap it back to Mike Lewis in Aber’s goal.
Another Borelli cross was gathered by Lewis, but then came the first moment of real quality when Geoff Kellaway picked out Craig Williams out on the left, and the Taff’s Well Touchline Terror hit a sumptuous lob first time over Craig Morris’ head to open the scoring: a brilliant strike.
Chris Venables tried another lob minutes later, but then the visitors equalised when the impressive Greg Walters managed to pick out Borelli at the back stick, and he tapped home. Pemberton headed wide again, Kellaway had a flick saved as did Borelli, and then Ross Stephens picked out Venables at the back post, but he headed inches wide, and a generally disappointing first half ended 1-1.
The second half started with the visitors creating most of the chances, with Pemberton having a low shot saved, and heading wide, but then on the hour the game turned when Williams cut inside from the left after a positive run and his low shot brought a save from Morris which spooned the ball into the air, and Venables managed to hook the ball over the goalkeeper to score with an instinctive lob which brought his season tally to 17, back on top of the Golden Boot List.
With the Dias Stand dancing, Rhys Griffiths released Kellaway through with a deft touch, and his shot was parried inches wide by Morris, but then the killer third came when Williams’ corner from the left was perfect for Griffiths to direct a strong header goal bound, which deflected in off the unfortunate Pemberton’s head.
Aber still had some defending to do, with Stephens, Lee Surman and Antonio Corbisiero making crucial blocks to defend their lead. Walters curled an effort wide, and then late on sub Liam Jaques set up Williams for another blocked effort, and the game ended at 3-1: a testament to Wyn Thomas and his Players’ desire to get a result when it really mattered.
This precious victory keeps Aber right in the running for the UEFA Europa League Play Offs, and with seventeen points garnered from their eight post split game to date, the Black and Greens can confidently look forward to another important clash at Carmarthen Town next Saturday afternoon (Kick Off 2.30pm).
Cardigan Golf Club Ladies Section raise funds for RNLI
EVERY year the Ladies Section at Cardigan Golf Club hold a competition dedicated to the RNLI, and this year they raised a magnificent £122 from donations made by the lady members.
Accepting the cheque on behalf of the RNLI was New Quay RNLI Station Mechanic Bernie Davies, “We would like to thank all the lady members of Cardigan Golf Club who donated to the RNLI. Their generosity is very much appreciated and enables our volunteers to continue saving lives at sea.”
Pam Perry the Lady Captain at Cardigan Golf Club added, “We were thrilled to raise over a £100 with our annual golf competition especially in difficult times.”
Swans grab last gasp play-off spot
WAYNE ROUTLEDGE’s last-gasp header saw Swansea City secure a play-off spot with a handsome away victory over 10-man Reading on a dramatic Wednesday night (July 22).
Steve Cooper’s side knew they had to win at the Madejski Stadium to have any hope of a top-six finish, and Rhian Brewster’s 10th goal of the season gave them an ideal start.
The sending off of Yakou Meite then gave the Swans a man advantage, but the Royals equalised before the half through a George Puscas penalty.
The Swans restored their lead through a classy finish from substitute Routledge, before Liam Cullen showed great composure to steer in his first goal for the club.
And when Routledge popped up at the death to complete his brace it put the Swans into the top six as Forest suffered a 4-1 defeat at home to Stoke, meaning Swansea got into the play-offs on goal difference.
The Swans started on the front foot, with centurion Connor Roberts having particular joy down the right-hand flank.
Brewster then nearly threaded Conor Gallagher in on goal after fine work by Andre Ayew, before Roberts hit a strike into the ground and over the bar after Jake Bidwell had made the overlap on the opposite flank.
The hosts responded by having a good spell of possession, probing and asking a few questions of their own.
But the visitors hit the lead in the 16th minute through Brewster. The striker picked the ball up some 30 yards out and got the ball out of his feet before smashing a long-range drive that completely deceived Rafael in the Reading goal.
John Swift curled a free-kick over at the other end, while more good work by Roberts could not quite end with Bidwell getting on the end of a deep cross before Rafael made a hash of dealing with a Gallagher cross.
Swift headed straight at Erwin Mulder from a good counter on the half-hour mark, with Ayew quickly advancing up the field to work Rafael again.
Opportunities were coming at both ends, with Mulder called into action again as Meite took aim from the left side of the area.
Swansea were riding their luck a little and had a let-off when a sliced clearance landed on top of the bar.
Matt Grimes had a free-kick pushed away by Rafael before the home side were reduced to 10 men after Meite had pushed Mike van der Hoorn in the face after a tussle for the ball.
But the hosts made light of the numerical disadvantage by levelling after Bidwell was adjudged to have fouled Andy Rinomhota, with Puscas beating Mulder – who got a hand to the strike – from the spot.
However, the Swans should have led at the break. Ben Cabango’s shot was blocked and fell to Jay Fulton, but the Scot pulled his shot wide of the target.
Rafael pushed away an Ayew drive right on half-time, with Swansea frustrated that referee Stephen Martin did not award them a penalty of their own as Fulton went down under a challenge from Omar Richards.
With Cardiff winning and Nottingham Forest losing, Cooper knew goals were needed and he made two changes at the break.
Yan Dhanda came on for Fulton, while Routledge replaced van der Hoorn, and they were immediately on the front foot.
With Swansea committing so many players forward, Reading looked to sit deep and play on the break and they proved resolute as the visitors battled to find a way through.
Grimes curled a free-kick wide of the target and Gallagher also threatened from distance, but the hour mark came and went without any clear-cut chances to show for their dominance of possession and territory.
However, when they did craft a sight of goal they took the chance clinically. Grimes produced a lovely ball, and Routledge controlled superbly to loft the ball over Rafael and into the net.
Unfortunately for the Swans, that goal went in moments after Forest had equalised against Stoke, which appeared to put a sizeable dent in their playoff aspirations.
Nevertheless, Cooper’s side continued to search for more goals in the hope events in the East Midlands would turn back in their favour.
They so nearly made it 3-1 with 17 minutes to play as lovely link play from Rutledge and Bidwell ended with Ayew steering just wide.
The situation was changing all the time, and Stoke retook the lead at Forest to leave the door ajar for the Swans.
And, when Stoke scored a third at the City Ground and Cullen coolly fired home his first senior goal for the club with six minutes remaining, they suddenly only needed a goal to finish in the play-off places.
Grimes had a deflected shot tipped over but the Swans then got the goal they needed in stoppage time as Routledge popped up to nod in at the far post, with Stoke’s fourth goal putting the matter beyond doubt a few moments later to spark delighted celebrations among Cooper, his players and his staff.
Glamorgan launch new kit
GLAMORGAN Cricket has unveiled its new Vitality Blast playing kit for the 2020 season.
Designed by the Club’s official kit supplier, Masuri, alongside Glamorgan’s management, players and coaches, the brand-new Vitality Blast strip contains a subtle Welsh twist.
Fitting Glamorgan’s traditional colour schemes, the top is dark navy with a tonal dragon across the front – a nod to the old Glamorgan nickname and the Welsh identity – while a sharp yellow trim on the neck and sleeves frames the top.
The famous ‘Daff’ sits on the heart of the shirt, with MiPost’s strong Welsh brand centre-stage. Appearing on the collars are the logos of ‘Official Players Car Partner’, Mon Motors and Welsh company, Philtronics Solutions, with Discover Leeks on the right sleeve and SA Group on the back.
The famous Aston Martin logo features on both side of the Glamorgan T20 cap, as they continue their ongoing support of the club.
Head of Commercial, Huw Warren, said: “We’ve enjoyed working with Masuri throughout the design process and together developed an exciting new kit we’re sure our supporters will love with its strong connections with Wales.
“Our Masuri kits have always been hugely successful with players and fans alike and we look forward to continuing our commercial partnership with them.
“We can’t wait to see our players wearing the new kit when the Blast gets underway later this summer.”
Masuri CEO, Sam Miller, said: ‘’Once again it has been a pleasure working with the team at Glamorgan to bring this year’s kit to life, and we are looking forward to seeing it in use during the much anticipated Vitality Blast this year.’’
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