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Mardle magic entertains the crowd

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DARTS superstar Wayne ‘Hawaii 501’ Mardle rocked into Haverfordwest on Friday (Feb 9), accompanied by Darts lead referee Richard ‘Little’ Ashdown for a Charity extravaganza at Haverfordwest Cricket Club which attracted over a hundred spectators to the benefit of two local charities, The Catrin Vaughan Foundation & Belles Story.

Raised in Romford, the die-hard Tottenham Hotspur supporter Mardle is also a keen ‘recreational’ golfer who also enjoys most sports. He plays poker on the Grovesnor Poker Tour, reaching the final table recently in finishing seventh whilst in his younger days he was a BMX stunt rider before darts became his life.

A well rounded, witty and respectful ‘mine host’ Mardle’s family plays a key role in his life and he has taken the opportunity to co-author a book with Ian Spragg, about the ups and downs in his life, entitled ‘Hawaii 501 – Life as a Darts Pro’. Wayne brought to the stage his charismatic performance and was loved by those fans present at the evening, co-ordinated by Lee Chenery and Craig Jones.

Lee exclaimed: “Just listening to Wayne on stage, you had to chuckle about his inquisitive and engaging mantra and why he remains so popular across the world, as he is one of the faces of darts, the second most viewed sport after Premier league football”

Mardle, known worldwide by his ‘Hawaii 501’ nickname, was joined as master of ceremonies by ‘Little’ Richard Ashdown, the Head British Darts Organisation Referee. His entrance to the Oche saw him draped in a floral Hawaiian shirt, shaking his hips to his catchy theme tune from the 1980s US TV show Hawaii 5.0, which sparked a response with the crowd jumping from their seats.

In ‘calling the board’ Ashdown engaged the audience to take on Mardle in 1:1 games on stage.

Fundraising for the two nominated charities was fundamental to the evening and leading the way was DJ Wayne Lewis, who rumbled the tunes and stage managed the ‘walk ons’ for those lucky enough to tackle Mardle in the head to head games.

Lewis, alongside local arrow enthusiasts, Shaun ‘Devsy’ Devonald, Gareth Jones, Tom Wray, Gareth Starling, Anthony John, Richard Prout, Marcus James and Chris Harris were unable to lower the flag the man who first played the game at eleven, won his first tournament at thirteen and reach number 5 in the world before suffering ill health.

Winners are grinners: Local player Jack Bevan with Wayne Mardle

The honour of victory fell to Stephen Jones, Anthony John and Jack Bevan, where Mark Morgan, Paul Hughes, Scott Nash and Michael Osborne were also called to the oche by Ashdown after winning the raffle draw to play Mardle who made his debut on the BDO circuit in 1993.

From this debut his nickname ‘Hawaii 501’ was established after he wore a Hawaiian shirt on the oche, for a bet.

Mardle made his first appearance at the BDO World Championships in 2000, joining the PDC in 2003 and reached four semi-finals, before illness forced him to retire.

Craig Jones sparkled in his thanks to those who supported the spectacular night, the Wolfscastle Country Hotel, Pembs Paints, Heatherton, Folly Farm. Gareth Bicknell, Drew Whelton, Cher Excell, Lost Coins, Jamie ‘Fireball’ Lewis and Haverfordwest Cricket Club.

He added: “The show was brilliant, with everyone enjoying the wisecracks from Wayne and Little Richard, joining in the spirit of the evening. It was the little things which made it happen, like Hayley Francis-Owens for scoring the games on the screen; Pembrokeshire certainly benefitted from the night, with the Belles Story and the Catrin Vaughan Foundation the real winners.”

Sport

Pembroke replace Cardiff in Bowl Final

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PEMBROKE will take part in the final of the WRU Bowl after all after semi-final opponents Cardiff University were found to have breached the competition’s eligibility rules.

The National Bowl Final will take place on Sunday, April 29, at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff.

Pembroke were beaten by Cardiff in the semi-final but lodged an appeal following the game.

Pembroke, whose Youth team will compete in today’s National Youth Plate Final v Tondu (Principality Stadium, 1.15pm) will now face Porthcawl in next week’s National Bowl Final in the first of the National Finals Day encounters (1pm), Nant Conwy play Brynmawr in the National Plate Final (3.15pm) and Merthyr play Newport in the National Cup Final (5.35pm).

All three finals will be broadcast by S4C and tickets for National Finals Day are available on www.wru.wales/tickets

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Sport

Carew earn deserved win

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CAREW earned a deserved 3-1 victory on Friday night (Apr 20) as they beat Neyland thanks to goals from Jordan Richards, Sam Christopher and Alex Bayley.

It also means that the Rooks are still very much in with a chance of finishing third in the league as they, Merlins Bridge and Clarbeston Road are all locked on 39 points.

Jordan Richards gave the hosts the lead in the first half and it could have been much more for the home side if they had taken some of their chances.

Instead it remained 1-0 at half time and Neyland were still in with a chance of getting something out of the game.

Alex Bayley came close to scoring for the Rooks after he beat a tackle to run into the box before cutting side but his effort was saved by the Neyland keeper.

Neyland then brought themselves level as Jake Booth slid the ball across the box and Geraint Rees was on hand to tap the ball in.

Jordan Richards then did well to keep hold of the ball on the by-line before passing to Sam Christopher who fired past the keeper.

Bayley was causing problems for the Neyland defenders and he brushed past one of them before firing low into the bottom corner of the net to make it 3-1.

Neyland looked to get back into the game late on but Carew held on for the three points.

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Clarbeston Road v Hakin United: Senior Cup Final Preview

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THIS Saturday (Apr 21), sees Hakin United and Clarbeston Road battle it out for the biggest prize in Pembrokeshire Football as they take to the field for the Senior Cup Final.

The game will be played at the Bridge Meadow Stadium in Haverfordwest and another big crowd is expected.

Clarbeston Road were beaten in last year’s final by Merlins Bridge but having beaten them in the semi-final, the Road will be eager to pick up the trophy on Saturday.

For Hakin, it is a first final since 2016 when they were beaten by Goodwick United and they will also be keen to regain the trophy they last won in 2012.

The two side met in the league back in October, 2017, and on that occasion it was Hakin United who came out on top with a 2-1 victory at the Obs.

The Vikings come into this game top of Division 1 following a 5-2 win over Pennar Robins on Saturday (Apr 14) which saw danger man Nicky Woodrow scoring a hat trick.

Clarbeston Road eased to victory as they beat Angle 13-1 with league top scorer Jason Griffiths scoring seven of their goals.

Those seven goals put Jason way out in front with 34 goals in the league so far this season and he will be keen to get on the score sheet once again.

Path to the final

Clarbeston Road began their route to the final with a 6-1 win at home to St Clears back in September with Griffiths scoring four of the goals in that game.

That was followed by victory over Fishguard Sports in the second round thanks to goals from Mathew Davies and Josh Wood.

In the third round, Clarbeston Road overcame a determined Hundleton side with Griffiths scoring a hat trick, the third of which came in injury time.

That put them in to the semi-finals where they played Merlins Bridge in a repeat of the 2017 final.

The Bridge won that game 2-1 but on this occasion it was Clarby who went through by the same scoreline with goals coming from Tom Ruebens and Ieuan Cooke.

Hakin United began their Senior Cup campaign with a 4-1 win away to Camrose which saw Nicky Woodrow score a hat trick.

In the second round, the Vikings made it through with a 5-1 over Narberth as Justin Harding scored twice.

The quarter final saw them take on Neyland and after a tense battle, they came out on top with a 2-0 win.

That set up a semi-final with Carew but an excellent first half saw them lead 3-0 courtesy of goals from Justin Harding and Nicky Woodrow.

Carew hit back but Woodrow scored a second to send Hakin through to the final with a 4-2 win.

What the teams say?

Hakin United manager Kristian Bennet told the Herald: “The boys trained on Monday and they are ready for the game and excited for it.

“For a few of the boys it is their first Senior Cup Final and we also have a few boys that have done it before.

“We will give Clarbeston Road all the respect, they reached the final last year and we only beat them by one goal in the league in October so we are expecting another tough game.

“We will be approaching the game like a normal game as we’ll meet at the club as usual on the day before heading up to the Bridge Meadow.”

Clarbeston Road’s Matthew Ellis said: “All at the club are looking forward to the game Saturday and are hoping that we can go one step further this season and lift the cup.

“We have no injury concerns and should all be fresh after a free midweek schedule.

“Our plans for the day are the same as last year, breakfast in the Cross and a bus to the ground.

“The bus is then collecting supporters from around Clarbeston Road, the support last year was outstanding. Hopefully the weather will be as good as it was last season.

“We will approach the game as we always do and give 100%”.

Club captain Jason Griffiths added: “I think as a team we should all be proud of reaching the last two finals. Last season we were huge underdogs being in the second division and only having two players with senior cup final experience but this season we are very much equals and shouldn’t be taken lightly.

“We are aware of how good a side Hakin are but having already played them in the league we can see where we can beat them.

“Everyone in the squad is very much looking forward to it and will all have huge roles to play on the day and hopefully get a memorable victory!”

Good luck to both sides and may the best team win!

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