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Seagulls’ six-try victory over Bont

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By Jonathan Twigg

FISHGUARD all but secured their Division 2 West status on Saturday (Mar 24) with a bonus point victory in their 34-20 defeat of Pontyberem.

The Seagulls ran in six tries to open up a nine point gap between themselves and the relegation trap door and now stand two points adrift of their visitors, who have played three games more both having notched six wins this season.

Led by hooker Gavin Walsh, Fishguard’s success can be attributed to a dominant forward performance where they were tenacious on the floor around the key battle ground of the rucks and mauls, controlling the scrum which put pressure on the visitors’ set piece and gained parity at the line out.

The back row of Chris Sousha, Luke Freebury and number 8 Simon James supported their more youthful back division by making the hard yards whilst being on hand to secure phase after phase of ball to keep the momentum going forward.

The opening score of this Travis Perkins sponsored game came after 13 minutes when flanker Sousha touched down, the try set up by debutant full back Robbie Jones, the Chairman’s son drafted in from the youth side and his pace, verve and confidence to run 40 meters reminiscent of a bygone era when ‘JJ’ himself flew down the wing.

James, centre Tom George and scrum half Andrew Williams supported man of the match Jones’ momentum where the mobility of home props Andrew Morillo and Ryan McVeigh saw them on the fringe of an exciting move.

Outside half Alun George, who had narrowly missed a penalty attempt four minutes earlier, landed the conversion, a feat he repeated five minutes later when centre Ben John finished off another passage of play with a mazy run over 30 metres with two hand offs, after James capitalised on a loose clearance from the Bont’s full back Rhodri Lewis, the number 8 setting flame haired winger Dylan Thomas, playing on permit from Crymych blazing down the touchline.

Pontyberem needed a foothold in the game but were reduced to 14 men when number 8 Wayne Williams was yellow carded by Cefn Cribwr based referee Huw David for a high tackle during the build up to the third try, skipper Walsh completing another forwarded orientated drive after ball had been secured in the line out by second row Gwilym Evans, who was instrumental in the driving maul alongside Morrillo and McVeigh.

The blue and black shirts sponsored by Jewsons gained some composure as the half time whistle approached, flanker Dion Robinson a go to man in the line out for hooker Ben Morris and scum half Adrian Williams pulling the strings to motivate his side as any good skipper should. Outside half Domonic Sauro slotted over a penalty as the home side strayed offside and their discipline in defence breached as they came from the side of rucks to illegally stop the visitors’ drives.

Number 8 Williams returned to the fray tidied up neatly at the base of a backwards moving scrum either side of half time, the early stages of the second half scrappy and unstructured much to the despair of passionate home coach Huw Evans, who could see the danger signs of the play suiting the Pontyberem game plan better.

The pack, with second row Matthew Lloyd and prop James Prosser marauding in midfield, put fellow prop Dan Suaro across the whitewash for Dominic to convert, alongside another penalty for 19-13.

Fishguard second row Jac Evans, a key line out man and ball carrier was lucky not to spend time in the sin bin when he tackled centre Gwion Jones in the air as the Pontyberem side had the wind both behind them in terms of play and figuratively in their sails, something Evans vociferously explained to his side as the final quarter approached.

His words were rewarded when the forwards secured a bonus point fourth try, Walsh getting his name on the score sheet for a second time burrowing through after James had set up the attacking ruck. Prosser responded for Pontyberem making yardage, supported by second row Alex Williams and back row man Pete Suaro, as the deficit was reduced to four points with a converted try for centre Dafydd Lloyd.

Experience counts: Try scoring skipper Gavin Walsh & Number 8 Simon James

Wingers Dave Evans and Rhys Armstrong had ball in hand for the ‘Bont’ with the game on a precipice, the next score crucial. It came to the home side as they took advantage of a turnover deep in their own half and young Jones backed his skill set and pace to create an overlap, centre George beautifully drawing the final defender on halfway to set winger Liam Wilkes away down the touchline to cross wide out with eight minutes remaining, to compensate for a similar move just minutes before when he was recalled for a foot in touch.

George didn’t have his kicking boots on in the second half but his maturity to influence open play, with confidence in the final throws of the game saw a sixth try a minute from the end, McVeigh the recipient as James, Freebury and Sousha came to the fore, certainly a backrow at this level to be on par with any.

The midfield axis, John either side of the George brothers and Jones from full back bodes well for the Seagulls, thankfully for coach Evans, who has very little hair left to tear out. This isn’t down to alopecia, contributing for his entertaining apoplectic demeanour, knowing his side now go on their travels for the next four fixtures, heading next to Parc Gryffyd Jones for a key encounter with St Clears on Easter Saturday.

Pontyberem returned to the Gwendraeth Valley with nothing to show for their efforts on the Moors, having consolidated well on going 19-0 down, despite struggling in the scrum set piece, to have an opportunity to win the game. The key moment when they turned the ball over for Jones to open the play in his own 22 yard metre area a point of reflection, as they head to Loghour on Easter Saturday (Mar 31), the home side failing to fulfil their fixture at Hendy due to player numbers available.

That ensuing points deduction draws Loughor back into the group with the Bont, both hanging a lingering eye on the relegation trap door.

Sport

Phillips takes a hat trick as Cresselly seal Alec Colley final spot

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CRESSELLY are through to the final of the Alec Colley Cup after beating Hook on Wednesday night (July 21) at Narberth Cricket Club.

Chris Phillips took a hat trick for Cresselly as they restricted Hook to 133-8 in their innings before going to pass their target for the loss of only one wicket.

Hook won the toss and batted first on another warm evening and openers Jamie Phelps and George James shared 37 runs for the first wicket.

Phelps scored 18 but he was then caught and bowled as Phillips picked up the first of his four wickets.

James hit five fours and six in his score of 33 but Phillips had him caught by Scott Arthur.

Phillips then removed Brennan Martin with the next ball before bowling Oscar Willington to claim his hat trick.

It left Hook reeling on 64-4 but scores of 32 from Liam Miller and 21 from Will Goronwy rescued Hook.

Matthew Lewis claimed the wicket of Miller and he later bowled Andrew Thomas to finish with figures of 2-29.

There was also two wickets for Corey Lewis but it was Phillips’ figures of 4-33 that stood out.

Scott Arthur and Neil Williams got Cresselly’s reply off to a great start as they shared 50 runs for the first wicket.

Williams was bowled by Oscar Willington on a score of 6 but that was the only wicket to fall.

Arthur and Chris Phillips shared 84 runs to take Cresselly into the Alec Colley Cup final.

Phillips added to his earlier wickets with a score of 25 not out that included four fours.

Arthur was the star of the innings however, as he hit 12 fours to finish not out on 73.

They will now play the winners of the tie between Neyland and Saundersfoot who play tonight at Carew Cricket Club.

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Sport

Serrant-Green signs for Haverfordwest County

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HAVERFORDWEST COUNTY AFC has announced the signing of forward Jack Serrant-Green.

The 27-year-old puts pen-to-paper on a deal that will see him play his football at the Bridge Meadow Stadium for the 2021/22 Cymru Premier season.

Serrant-Green arrives in West Wales having recently played in the League of Ireland for Finn Harps and becomes the Bluebirds’ sixth signing of the summer.

Born in Nottingham, he began his career at Burton Albion, playing for their Under-18s side.

In 2013, he moved abroad to play for Swedish outfit Gottne IF. After two years in the Ettan Norra, he moved around to other clubs like Gällivare-Malmbergets, IFK Umeå, Kiruna FF, Söderhamns FF and Bodens BK.

The prolific striker accumulated a total of 92 goals in 149 appearances during his spell in the third, fourth and fifth tiers of Sweden.

Jack has been assigned the number 15 shirt and is available for sponsorship. If you are interested in sponsoring our newest recruit, please contact r.edwards@hcafc1899.football.

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Sport

Pembroke U11s earn first win of season

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PEMBROKE Under 11s earned their first win of the season recently as they beat Lamphey.

Pembroke scored 255-4 while Lamphey could only reach 245-4. Elsewhere in the Under 11s leagues, Narberth beat Haverfordwest.

Narberth U11s (250-5) beat Haverfordwest U11s (231-7)

Narberth: Iddgoda 2/2 & 9, O Johns 3/2, Z Aspurra 2/10.

Haverfordwest: Will D 1/6, Brandon D 2/5, Osian M 1/2, Imogen H 1/2.

The Under 11’s Semi Finals will both be played on Monday July 26.

Hook will host St Ishmaels and Saundersfoot are at home to Llechryd. The winners of the two games will contest the final which will be played at Hook on Monday, August 9.

Under 13’s

Hook (121-2) beat St Ishmaels (34-all out)

Hook: Oscar Willington 27 retired & 3-0, Ifan Williams 25 retired & 1-0, Rhys Phelps 17, William Harries 13 retired, Charlie Holder 7, Edward Johnson 2-6, Callum Nutty 1-6, Harri Evans 1-7

St Ishmaels: Dylan McGuire 4, Alfie Thomas 4, Ethan Dawes 4, Sammy Wilson 1-14

Under 15’s

Whitland (73-5) beat Llechryd (72-6)

Whitland: Charles Bujega 27 not out, Rhys Jones 18, Ethan Ryan 13, Cai lewis 1-3, Dai James 1-12 Cian Rees 1-16

Llechryd: Tomos Lewis 19 & 2-7, Ifan WJ 9, Joe Dow 1-8

Cresselly (28-all out) lost to Lawrenny (29-0)

Cresselly: Charlie Arthur 9, Ollie Arthur 9

Lawrenny: Finley Lewis 17 not out, Will Allen 10 not out, Rhydian Eynon 1-0, Mark White 1-3, Corey Hall 3-9, Noah Williams 5-1

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