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Blues brave Brian to batter Tregaron

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HAVERFORDWEST moved up to second place in League 3 West A with a thumping 64-3 win over Tregaron on Saturday (Oct 21).

Storm Brian had taken its toll on many other games across the county and although the Blues’ pitch was deemed playable, conditions were still tricky for both sides.

Tregaron made the long trip down to play their first game against Haverfordwest for a very long time following their move into the league.

The Blues could only draw with Pembroke Dock Quins in their last outing and they were keen to put that right with a win against Tregaron.

They started the game well and went ahead when Matty Phillips crossed over and Centre Gareth John added the extra two points.

Tregaron hit back and Gwion Phillips scored with a penalty to narrow the deficit.

The Blues had a number of chances to score again but were guilty of giving the ball away on a couple of occasions.

However, when Tregaron had a penalty, the kick didn’t go as far as they would have hoped because of the strong winds and the ball stayed within their half of the field.

That allowed the Blues to keep the pressure on and John was again involved who offloaded to Outside half Matthew Davies and he just managed to get the ball away to young Full Back Ollie Hughes who went over on the right for their second try of the game. John then added the extras for a 14-3 lead.

Morgan Layton was next to over for the home side towards the end of the first half and John added the conversion to make the score 21-3.

It didn’t take the Blues long to score early in the second half as Rhys Baker picked up the ball and ran over for their fourth try of the match to earn his side a bonus point and John again converted.

Hughes then scored two tries in as many minutes as he completed his hat trick.

Baker then grabbed a second try while Mike Griffiths and replacement Liam Manwaring also got on the scoresheet.

John added three more conversions to complete an excellent win for the Blues who will now be looking to challenge at the top end of the table.

On Saturday, October 28, the Blues are away to St Davids.

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Nigel Owens hosts virtual rugby quiz for Pembroke Panthers

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PEMBROKE Panthers RFC enjoyed a rugby return during lockdown after winning a competition which saw international referee Nigel Owens host their own virtual clubhouse quiz, thanks to Principality Building Society.

The women’s squad at the Pembroke club beat more than 1000 entries to win Principality’s Clubhouse Quiz competition. With many clubs affected by widespread flooding at the start of this year and now closed indefinitely due to coronavirus, the building society is continually looking for ways to support grassroots rugby clubs in Wales.

Pembroke Panther Lucy Neale, 30, entered her team with the hope of bringing the players together online. She said: “We’d usually see each other up to five times a week between training sessions, matches and socials, so it’s been a really strange time. I thought I’d enter the club thinking it would be a nice pick-me-up for us all, but never actually expected to win so it was an amazing surprise.”

The team were tested on their rugby knowledge by world cup referee Nigel Owens over video conferencing platform Zoom, where players won tickets to Welsh internationals at Principality Stadium, signed rugby shirts and balls, and tickets for a tour around Principality Stadium. The quiz included a guest appearance from former Welsh international Tom Shanklin.

Lucy continued: “It was such a memorable and special evening for us all. We’re usually quite a lively bunch but we behaved well for Nigel. We’re so thankful to Principality for putting on the quiz and allowing us to enjoy this once in a lifetime experience as a team.”

As sponsors of Principality Stadium and the National Youth Leagues for grassroots clubs in Wales, Principality has a strong relationship with the Welsh Rugby Union and knows how much rugby means to communities across the country. With matches on hold currently, the building society wanted to be able to bring the buzz of the clubhouse to the home.

Clubhouse Quiz host, Nigel Owens, said: “Principality’s Clubhouse Quiz was a fantastic way to bring one team closer together and Pembroke Panthers really showed off their rugby knowledge. Rugby plays such an important role in Welsh communities and I know they’ll be missing the action on the field right now, so it was lovely to have been part of this experience to bring this team together. Thankfully, I didn’t have to sin bin any of them either.”

Julie-Ann Haines, Chief Customer Officer at Principality Building Society, said: “Many rugby clubs across Wales have had a really difficult year, with flood damage to pitches and clubhouses now followed by coronavirus. This was our chance to recreate the camaraderie of the clubhouse for one team and we hope that it brought plenty of laughs and memorable moments for Pembroke Panthers at this challenging time.”

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Wales v Scotland postponed

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WALES’ Six Nations match at home to Scotland on Saturday has been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The two other Six Nation fixtures had already been postponed and no date has been confirmed to complete the 2020 Championship.

The Welsh Rugby Union had insisted earlier on Friday the game would “go ahead as planned”.

A WRU statement read: “The Welsh Rugby Union has maintained an open dialogue with, and continued to seek advice and direction from, the National Assembly for Wales and other stakeholders, including the Six Nations, on this fast-moving issue.

“Whilst medical advice remains consistent, we have decided that it is in the best interests of supporters, players and staff to fall in line with recent measures taken across the UK and global sports industries.

“The WRU would like to thank all parties for their counsel on the subject and will make further announcements with respect to rescheduling the fixture in the coming days.

“Every effort has been made to stage this game and we appreciate that individuals will have been inconvenienced. Given the fluid and unprecedented nature of this issue a postponement became the only viable option.”

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Domestic football at all levels in Wales suspended

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THE FOOTBALL Association of Wales has today (13 March) taken the decision to suspend domestic football at all levels in Wales with immediate effect until April 4 due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The intention at this time will be to resume the football schedule depending on the medical advice and conditions from the relevant authorities at that time.

The FAW is fully aware of the impact this will have on the domestic game but the health and safety of all fans, players, volunteers and stakeholders are of paramount importance.

The FAW will continue to monitor this situation on a day-by-day basis and will continue to provide updates when appropriate.

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