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Holders through as Lawrenny beat Kilgetty in goal-fest

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By Jonathan Twigg

FIVE Second Division Cup ties took place on Saturday (Nov 18), with Saundersfoot Sports home match at the King George V field against current table toppers, Hakin United Reserves postponed as the bottom corner was deemed waterlogged by referee Charles Davies.

The winners of that tie will then travel to meet Solva at Glan Hafran in the Quarter Finals early next year as they were already through to the last eight stages as one of two Clubs to receive a bye.

Prendergast Villa were the second club to progress courtesy of a bye and they will welcome Lawrenny to the School Field after the bottom of the table side upturned the form book to overcame last season’s Division 3 champions and current promotion favourites Kilgetty 7-6.

Trailing on their own sports field 4-0 after 20 minutes and missing a plethora of players due to Adam Jenkins stag weekend, the Lawrenny side dug deep in appalling ground conditions and driving rain.

They battled themselves back to reduce the deficit to 4-2 at half time, with goals from centre midfielder Matt Lewis wide midfielder Joe Kidney. Centre forward Henry Lawrence scored the second visiting goal after his side had taken the lead through a deflected goal attempt, before Tom Baker and Lawrence opened a 4-0 lead.

The yellow and blue Kingsmore outfit then went 5-2 ahead with a strike from Brett Evans before the sides exchanged goals through home centre forward Jamie Phillips and Lawrence completed his hat trick.

The village side are made of stern stuff and they rolled up their black and gold sleeves to score three goals in five eventful minutes to set up a grandstand finish for the last ten minutes.

Playing away from their Clubhouse the ground was a tad better which allowed Phillips to net his second of the game, experienced Steve Campbell to level the scores and a minute later young winger Sam Davies to put them ahead for the first time in the keenly contested yet sporting local derby.

Kilgetty failed to square the game before referee Sean O’Connor blew for full time in the game sponsored by Morgan Construction, thanks to some heroic defending coupled with the quagmire in their own goal area and veteran goalkeeper Danny Harries being in top form.

St Clears hammered visitors Letterson 14-0 at the Leisure Centre ground having been set on their way by chirpy attacking midfielder Nathan Evans strike after 40 seconds.

The JRV Taxis sponsored game was over quickly as a contest as the Boars front three scored at will against a side who remained in Division 2 this season by default with Tenby withdrawing from Division 1 before a ball had been kicked in anger this season. Josh James led the way when he went nap for the claret and whites as Steve Thomas helped himself to four goals and the well-travelled Sean Seymour Davies bagged a hat trick alongside a visitor’s own goal.

Such was the one sided nature of the game skipper Martyn Thomas was a distant observer from centre back and his defence marshalled the opposition so well they only had fleeting forays into the danger zone.

Jonathan Sealy also had his spot kick well saved in the bottom left corner by veteran David Lawrence who was responsible for keeping the score to 14-0 with some excellent saves, although home manager Scott Page saw his side waste numerous opportunities.

Reward for the St Clears win will see them travel to the Racecourse to take on current Cup holders Merlin’s Bridge Reserves, buoyed by the return to the Carmarthenshire town of defender Dorian Davies from West Dragons.

Hundleton: Pictured before their Senior Cup game, were beaten by Merlins Bridge on Saturday

The Glenn Hotel sponsored Bridge overcame Hundleton 4-3 at the Village playing field in a scrappy encounter with veteran front man Aaron Devine opening the scoring for the Wizards before Kai Roberts on the right wing put them 2-0 ahead. Jack Phillips pulled one back for the Pembroke village side before half time and the introduction of stoic centre midfielder Lloyd Wilson set the scene for a titanic second half encounter.

With six players under the age of 18 in their starting 11 the Bridge thrived in the battle and sixteen year old left winger Ben Davies extended the lead to 3-1 after 52 minutes.

Another sixteen year old, Josh Thomas made it 4-1 after an hour of play when he struck from his position playing behind Devine and Curtis Hicks grew in stature as the game progressed. Playing in the centre of midfield Hicks dominated in the air and sprayed passes which belied the underfoot conditions in a man of the match performance.

With 10 minutes remaining winger Joe Buckle reduced the score to 4-2 and striker Dylan Davies scored to make the final few minutes a tense affair for the inexperienced visitors who were thankful for the composure to 51 year old goalkeeper Aaron Riley.

Riley made a string of fine saves to roll back the years as his experience as a Welsh league player with Haverfordwest County, albeit as a winger came to the fore, before referee Kevin Millich blew for full time.

St Ishmaels travelled to Pill Parks to take on a Llangwm side who progressed to Division 2 following three promotions in four years, but bowed out 2-0 in their first foray into the cup competition refereed by Karl Davies.

Tish scored a goal in each half with player manager Andrew Howells tapping in at the far post after nearly 30 minutes of the first half thanks to some excellent work wide out from Ieuan Hawkins. Home goalkeeper Ashley Bevans, standing between the sticks for his twin brother Anthony who was away training with the Royal Navy did well behind a back four led by veteran left back Gary Reynolds.

Glen Hewer, Dan Thomas and Martin John supported Reynolds in keeping the attacks at bay as the visiting midfield got the upper hand in the difficult conditions. In a game of few clear cut opportunities the tie was put to bed by Hawkins who capitalised on good wing play from Joseph Bates as in the first half to find space at the far post to score.

St Ishmaels will welcome Fishguard Sports to the Recreation ground, after they overcame Johnston 4-1 at Tregroes Park. The Sports were always in control of the game and led the ‘Tigers’ 2-0 thanks to strikes from former Goodwick midfielder Lewis Banks and Ryan Howells just before the half time whistle from referee Keith Amos.

Stand-in goalkeeper Lewis Boswell was blameless for the goals as the home side dominated possession against a side which lifted the West Wales Intermediate Cup just four seasons ago and they had a chance through striker Ryan Doyle just after the break when he should have pulled the score back to 2-1 when he was one on one with goal keeper.

The game went 4-0 to the Sports through defensive mistakes by centre back Jack Bevans, who lost his footing allowing Banks to score his second of the game before he was robbed close to his own 18 yard box and Matt Harries walked the ball into the net.

Doyle pulled a consolation back with a sumptuous strike before the end for Johnston who will now concentrate on pulling themselves away from second bottom of the league and the ignominy of successive relegations.

Sport

Division 3: Three-horse race

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THE Division 3 title race and promotion will be decided on Saturday (Aug 24) with three teams all still in the hunt.

Last week, Llanrhian, who had been top prior to their game, saw their match at Llangwm Seconds called off after they claimed their pitch was wet.

Herbrandston then beat Lamphey to move top of Division 3 while the Stags picked up enough points to knock Llanrhian down to third.

Going into the final round of games, Herbrandston are 19 points ahead of Lamphey and 22 points above Llanrhian.

Herbie face a trip to Narberth Seconds knowing a win will see them crowned Champions while a draw would also be enough.

A defeat could allow Lamphey in to be crowned Champions but that would also rely on Herbie not picking up more than 11 points.

Lamphey face fourth placed Laugharne in what is likely to be a tough game for both sides.

Llanrhian still have an outside chance of claiming the title but they would need to rely on Herbie and Lamphey losing their games.

Llanrhian will look to put last week’s disappointment behind them as they host Stackpole.

A win for Llanrhian coupled with a Lamphey defeat or draw could still see them promoted.

Elsewhere, the bottom four sides play each other with one final relegation place to be decided.

Whitland seconds currently sit second from bottom and they travel to fourth from bottom Haverfordwest thirds.

A win for Whitland could move them above Town and if Llangwm also won that could see Town drop down a Division.

Llangwm seconds take on already relegated Lawrenny seconds. Llangwm sit eight points above Whitland and know anything other than a win could let Whitland go above them.

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Sport

Division 2: Narberth and Llechryd face off for title

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LLECHRYD will host Narberth on Saturday (Aug 24) with the winners being crowned champions of Division 2.

Both will be playing their cricket in Division 1 next season but the destination of the title will be decided on Saturday.

Going into the game, Llechryd sit top of the Division, 17 points ahead of Narberth. A home win will see Llechryd crowned champions but should Narberth take the win it will be they who go up as champions.

When the two teams met earlier in the season it was Narberth who came out on top with a seven wicket win.

With promotion and relegation decided there is little for the others to play for but some can still improve their final positions.

Pembroke sit third and on Saturday they are away to Kilgetty knowing if they slip up, Hook could claim third place if they beat Carew Seconds.

Relegated sides Johnston and Cresselly seconds will play each other at Glebelands with the winners earning their second win of the season.

Pembroke Dock also take on Haverfordwest seconds and a win for Town in that game will see them jump above the Dock.

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Sport

New Solva kit to continue Luke’s Stand Up To Cancer message

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THE family of inspirational cancer fundraising campaigner Luke Harding has donated a new kit to Solva AFC in his memory, which features four words that perfectly sum up the way he battled the illness – Stand Up To Cancer.

Luke, who played for Solva for around a decade, raised more than £30,000 for Withybush Hospital’s Ward 10 and local charities following his diagnosis with stage four lung cancer in 2016.

Medi George, Secretary of Solva AFC said: “Luke played football with the same dedication and energy with which he battled cancer and it is an honour for our club to be able to continue his message in this way.

“We are extremely grateful to Alex, Peter and the Harding family for this kind gesture and it is fitting that our players were able to wear the kit for the first time in the final of the first annual Luke Harding Memorial Cup.”

The kit was unveiled at Fishguard Sports’ ground before the final of the competition, with Goodwick United 2nds running out eventual 3-1 winners against Solva 2nds. The tournament also included Fishguard Sports and Letterston, which Luke also represented.

Ruth Amies, Cancer Research UK spokesperson for Wales, said: “We are extremely grateful to Luke’s family and to Solva AFC for supporting Stand Up To Cancer which funds life-saving research in Wales and across the UK. The new kit is a wonderful tribute to Luke who fundraised tirelessly throughout his diagnosis and we are thrilled the players wore the new kit for the first time this week.”

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