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Pembroke up to second

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PEMBROKE moved up to second place in League 2 West on Saturday (Feb 2) as they beat Tycroes 31-19.

It was an excellent win for the home side who had five of their forwards missing while first team captain Scott Powell was also unavailable.

They were also forced into a re-shuffle in the second row but despite that the Pembrokeshire Scarlets took the lead.

A lovely move involving the backs saw Jack Parkinson exchange passes with Sean Dalling who returned the ball to Parkinson for him to dive over.

The conversion was missed but soon after they had their second try as Dan Colley ran in from the 22 to score before Toby Smith added the extras for a 12-0 lead.

The ‘big red bus’ continued to push forward and they scored again after a Tycroes kick was fielded by Tom Lewis and he passed to left wing Sean Dalling who ran on score and Smith added the extras again.

Pembroke soon had their bonus point as Fraser James finished off a slick move to take the score to 24-0.

It was an excellent first half for the home side with Jonny Palmer playing well while Rhys Mainwaring and Jordan Gwillam also looked sharp.

Early in the second half Tycroes brought on a few replacements and that had the desired effect as they scored an early try which was then converted.

However, any hopes Tycroes had of making a comeback were soon dashed as Fraser James scored his second try of the game, touching down under the posts after the ball had been kicked over the top. Smith added the extras to make it 31-7.

The visitors did score two late tries, one of which was converted, to bring the score to 31-19 but Pembroke were never really troubled and they were able to see the game out.

Steff Jones, Daryl John and John James scored the tries for Tycroes while Aled Rees Jones kicked two of three conversions.

Jack Smythe, Billy Wood, Dom Colman and Tom Harding-Jones all came off the bench for the home side as they helped see their side to victory.

Pembroke are now just a point behind the leaders having played the same amount of games. Their next game sees them travel to Pontarddulais on Saturday, February 16.

Sport

Senior Cup Final Preview: Carew v Merlins Bridge

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Carew v Merlins Bridge

Senior Cup Final: Bridge Meadow, Haverfordwest, 2:30pm

ON Saturday (Apr 20), Merlins Bridge take on Carew in the final of the Senior Cup at the Bridge Meadow in Haverfordwest.

In the first of a final double-header, both sides will be doing all they can to get the upper hand and lift the trophy.

The two sides will also meet at the beginning of May in the West Wales Cup Final at the Liberty Stadium in Swansea.

Meetings between the two sides have been close this season with Merlins Bridge earning a 3-1 win at the Racecourse in November while their game finished 2-2 in Carew in January.

Winners: Merlins Bridge celebrate their 2017 victory

Both sides have had a fantastic season with only three losses between them and they currently sit second and third in the Division 1 table.

The Wizards are aiming to claim the League title as well while Carew are also only three points behind the leaders with a game left to play.

Merlins Bridge won the Senior Cup in 2017 and they will be looking to get their hands on the trophy once again.

The Rooks last won the Cup in 1986 and having last reached the final in 2005, they will be keen to make a new piece of history for the club.

Route to the final

The Wizards began their cup run with a comfortable 10-0 win over Cosheston in the first round with Adam Hawkins scoring five times.

They then beat Herbrandston 5-1 in the second round with Hawkins again on target twice with other goals from Nathan Greene, Joe Leahy and Ashley Beck.

In the quarter final they were pitted against rivals Hakin United but the Wizards went through with a 3-2 win at the Racecourse after Nathan Greene scored twice.

They then took on Monkton Swifts at the Bridge Meadow in the semi-final and earned a 3-0 win thanks to goals from Adam Hawkins, Laurie Haworth and Nathan Greene.

Scott Ferney: Scored in each round of the Cup for Carew

Carew began their route to the final with a 2-1 win over Johnston in the first round thanks to two goals from Scott Ferney.

The second round saw them win 4-1 away at Narberth with Jordan Richards scoring twice and Ferney again on target.

They earned a similarly comfortable 7-1 win over Solva in the last eight with Richards scoring a hat trick. Ferney also scored with other goals coming from Iwan Izzard, Sean Whitfield and Lloyd Hughes.

They then played Pennar Robins in the semi-final, also at the Meadow, and earned a 3-1 to book their place in the final. Sam Christopher, Sean Whitfield and Scott Ferney were all on target for the Rooks.

What the managers say

Merlins Bridge boss Matthew Divry told the Herald: “We’re looking forward to it, it’s a game between two very good sides and it should be a good game.

We are more than confident, we’ve been turning up in the big games and we’ve got a wealth of experience in the squad.

Not many of their players have won or played in the Senior Cup Final but it’s all on the day.

We have a confident dressing room and a full squad to choose from and it’s the first of four big games for us. Both sides are evenly matched.”

Carew manager Rob Scourfield told the Herald: “We’re really excited, two of the boys have been in a final before but it will be a completely new thing for the others but we’re really looking forward to it and we have a full squad to choose from.

Our games against the Bridge have been the toughest we’ve faced this season, they are really well-drilled and have lots of experience.

We’re the top goal scorers in Division 1 so we have a goal threat from everywhere and I’m hoping the boys will be on form.

We know they are strong at the back, I have been impressed with their wide players as well and Joe Leahy is up there as one of the best strikers in Pembrokeshire so he is a massive threat, he hit a hat trick against us so we are well aware of that.

It should be a nice day and I hope it’s a really good game of football. Both sides respect each other and it should be a good advert for Pembrokeshire football.”

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Sport

Castle hosts World Cup trophy

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SCORES of young Pembrokeshire Cricketers will have the chance to play in front of World Cricket’s most famous trophy next month when the ICC World Cricket Trophy Tour visits Pembroke Castle.

The visit coincides with the annual U9 Cricket in the Castle festival that has become such a hit with players and supporters since its inception two years ago.

Players from Neyland, St Ishmaels, Saundersfoot, Haverfordwest, Cresselly, Hook, Lawrenny and Whitland will all be eager to impress in front of the famous trophy that is touring the UK ahead of the ICC World Cricket Cup taking place in England and Wales between May 30 and July 14.

Pembroke Castle lends itself beautifully to host a cricket festival like this,” said Sport Pembrokeshire Cricket Development officer Martin Jones.

From speaking with players and parents in the past I know that they have enjoyed their time playing in the castle grounds and with the ICC World Cricket Cup Trophy paying a visit this year, it will be even more special.

With the introduction of All Stars Cricket, there are more youngsters between the ages of 5-10 playing cricket in the county than ever before which is great to see and bodes well for the health of the sport in Pembrokeshire in years to come.”

For more information about All Stars Cricket visit www.ecb.co.uk/play/all-stars.

For more information about the ICC World Cricket Cup and for when matches take place at the Cardiff Wales Stadium visit www.glamorgancricket.com

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Sport

Vikings come from behind to win

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HAKIN United kept up their fight for a top four finish as they came from behind with ten men to beat Saundersfoot 2-1 on Wednesday (Apr 17).

It was a third game in five days for the Vikings but they started the game well as Craig Nicholson had two good chances to score in the opening ten minutes, hitting the bar with his second effort.

Adrian Devonald was in goal for Hakin and he came off his line on one occasion to deny Saundersfoot a chance.

Camron Thomas also came close after beating a player and cutting inside he let fly from 30 yards but his effort bounced off the bar.

Nicky Woodrow was also proving a handful but found it difficult to link with his team mates.

At half time, Hakin subbed Brad Barrett for Jay Power and Luke Hart came off for Shane Walsh with a reshuffle in the middle.

Saundersfoot continued to make things tricky for the Vikings who came close again as good play from Walsh and Ali Robertson set up Woodrow but his 25-yard effort hit the bar again.

The home side were unlucky not to go ahead as they had a number of good chances to score.

Hakin then tried to play the offisde trap to no avail and Jimmy Walker took down the Saundersfoot man leaving the referee no choice but to pull out the red card.

Richard Cope scored the penalty as he tucked the ball into the side of the net out of reach of Devonald.

Dan Evans then picked up an injury for Hakin and he was replaced by Stuart MacDonald who with ten minutes to go, played in Camron Thimas who found Woodrow and his cross was tapped in at the far post by Justin Harding.

The home side looked to see the game out but with three minutes to go Jay Power was fouled giving Hakin a free kick.

MacDonald took it quickly to Thomas who found Woodrow in the box, he had his back to goal but crossed to the far post for Thomas who had kept running and he nodded in.

Hakin were able to see the game out and manager Kristian Bennett said: “It was a good game where we didn’t have it all our own way, but we didn’t panic even at 1-nil down with 10 men with only 15 left to play. The boys just stuck at it and were rewarded for their efforts.”

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