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Bluebirds earn a point against Nomads

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Haverfordwest County played out a 0-0 draw with Connah’s Quay Nomads at a sun-drenched Ogi Bridge Meadow in the JD Cymru Premier Play-Off Conference on Saturday (Mar 26), extending their unbeaten run to six matches.

The game, which was shown live on S4C by Sgorio, was an attritional and physical affair, with clear-cut chances hard to come by as the sides were forced to settle for a point apiece.

County had the better chances to score, with Alhagi Touray Sisay denied from point-blank range, before Ben Fawcett saw his shot from close range saved early in the second-half.

The result sees the Bluebirds move up a place to seventh (top of the Play-Off Conference), after Cardiff Metropolitan lost 2-0 to already-relegated Cefn Druids at The Rock.

Manager Nicky Hayen made just the one change to the team that beat Aberystwyth Town 6-0 last Tuesday, with Danny Williams taking the place of Jordan Davies who was ineligible to play against his parent club.

The first close call of the afternoon fell the way of the Bluebirds, when Williams’ ball into the area nearly picked out the head of Touray Sisay, but goalkeeper Oliver Byrne just got there first to intercept.

Lee Idzi had another impressive afternoon between the sticks, as he was called into action for the first time shortly after when he made a sharp save from a free-kick.

After winning the ball back high up the field, Williams spotted Byrne off his line and decided to try his luck from distance, but the ball flew wide of the left post.

After Nomads midfielder Paulo Mendes found the side netting with his shot from inside the area, the Bluebirds had a great chance to take the lead when Ben Fawcett’s clever flick gave Jazz Richards space to break into the area unopposed, as his cross picked out Touray Sisay who flicked the ball goalwards, but straight at Byrne, with the rebound coming back to the striker before hitting the right post.

County started the second-half well, with Touray Sisay collecting a second ball from a throw-in before it went loose and landed at the feet of Fawcett, who struck it first time from inside the area, but was denied by an instinctive save from Byrne.

Just a minute later, Touray Sisay went close when a ball upfield was headed into his path by Williams, as he unleashed a powerful volley from just outside the area which just cleared the crossbar.

Idzi was alert to keep the score at 0-0 when he reacted quickly push Aeron Edwards’ snapshot from inside the area to safety, before coming off his line decisively to palm the ball away from the clutches of Mendes.

Both teams were finding it difficult to play through the respective midfields, with efforts from distance proving to be the more favourable method, as Kurtis Rees let fly from distance but was denied by Byrne who got down low to his left.

Hayen made a double substitution with the final 20 minutes approaching, as Henry Jones and Ryan George came on in place of Williams and Touray Sisay to provide fresh legs.

It became clear in the closing stages, however, that the sides were beginning to run out of ideas in attack with both defences on top throughout.

The final stanza of the game was played out with neither side looking like finding a late winner, with the point probably suiting both managers, as County climbed to seventh and the Nomads moved out of the relegation zone.

The Bluebirds are next in action on Saturday, April 2 when they travel to the capital to take on Cardiff Metropolitan. Kick-off is at 14:30.

Sport

Narberth hosts Under 8s Rugby festival

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ON a cold Sunday morning (Sept 25) with temperatures barely above 10 degrees and with occasional rain and drizzle to dampen things down, a lively bunch of parents and coaches were entertained by youngsters learning and honing their rugby skills at the Lewis Lloyd ground which is the home of Narberth rugby.

It was a Lovely festival at home for the U8s of Narberth RFC and the young Otters won all their games:

Narberth 6 Llangwm 2
Tries from: 

Joe H x2
Danny E x1
Frankie P x2
Morgan R x1

Narberth 5 St Davids 2
Tries:

Noah L x1
Joe H x2
Danny E x2

Narberth 5 Pembroke 1
Tries:

Noah L x 2
Frankie P x 2
Molly J x1

Narberth 6 Milford 1
Tries:

Noah L x1
Jac M x1
Joe H x 1
Danny E x 2
Arthur P x 1

All the young players, boys and girls in the mixed team, were very pleased to be sporting their new kit, sponsored by RTS Lime Conservation and Tlysau’r Mor.

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Sport

Narberth Athletic seal big win over Emlyn

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THIS was a game of two halves, with Narberth playing at home on a very cold Saturday (Sept 24).

The visitors caused Narberth all sorts of problems at the breakdown in a frustrating first half of 40 minutes, the home team conceded 14 penalties but scored one try through Ryan Scourfield. Half time score 7-3.

After a good half time team talk from coaches Matt Davies and James Merriman, Narberth came out in the second half with a bit more enthusiasm and started to play at their renowned fast-running tempo creating some quick ball for the backs to work off, soon the tries started to come, scoring five tries in a purple ten-minute patch through players Ryan Scourfield, Shane Rossiter, Jordie James and Will (Pop) Davies.

During the second half, with Ryan Scourfield going over for his hat trick, two more tries followed from outside centre Llew Jones and Owain Hughes finishing off a superb display of running rugby.

Llew Jones moves the ball on

Shane Rossiter added four conversions to take the tally over 50 points. The running and linking play of the Narberth backs outclassed the visitors who never managed to breakdown the Narberth defence so they were unable to score any tries throughout the game.

Man of the match was awarded to flanker No 6 Jack Tucker on his first game back after a spell in Tenby.

A large crowd turned out to watch the squad and were well entertained. They enjoyed a social gathering in the clubhouse afterwards to finish the day off.

Sadly, one of the substitutes of the Newcastle Emlyn team, No. 6 Flanker Shaun Hawkins, suffered a leg and groin injury five minutes into the second half so he was taken to Withybush Hospital for a review. Narberth RFC wish him a speedy recovery.

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Sport

Narberth hold on for thrilling win over Bedwas

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NARBERTH travelled to Bedwas on Saturday (Sept 24) and came away with an excellent win at a ground where they hadn’t won for many years.

The young Otters team started well and within minutes a break from the base of a Narberth scrum led to centre Ilan Phillips sprinting in near the posts for a try which was converted by fly half Ianto Griffiths (0-7).

Shortly afterwards swift passing of the ball along the Narberth back line resulted in wing Josh Davies scoring in the corner. The try went unconverted (0-12).

Bedwas got themselves back into the game when the Bedwas scrum half took a quick penalty five metres from the Narberth line and scored under the posts. The Bedwas fly half converted to make the score 7-12.

Both teams attempted to run the ball at every opportunity but defences held firm until the ball unexpectedly popped out of the back of the Bedwas scrum and flanker Tom Powell was on hand to receive a pass and charge downfield. He raced a full 50 yards with no-one able to catch him until he reached the Bedwas try line and scored under the posts. Griffiths converted (7-19).

Then just before the break Bedwas were guilty of holding onto the ball on the ground and Griffiths kicked the penalty to make the half time score 7-22.

In the second half Bedwas came out far more determined and the Otters were forced to defend for long periods close to their try line. Eventually the Bedwas openside flanker raced over to score in the corner. The conversion attempt failed (12-22).

Within minutes Bedwas had scored again when from a lineout on the Narberth 5 metre line a rolling maul enabled the Bedwas hooker to score a try wide out and the conversion attempt was successful (19-22).

The Otters were now under constant pressure and the home crowd were jubilant when a further try was scored in the corner by the Bedwas right wing which was again converted to put the home team in the lead for the first time in the match by 26 points to 22.

However Narberth refused to give up and with ten minutes remaining they managed to score their fourth try when Josh Davies beat his man along the left touchline and passed inside to his supporting scrum half Lewys Gibby who scored the winning try wide out. The conversion attempt failed but the Otters held out for the remaining minutes to win an exciting and enthralling match 26-27.

After the match coach Sean Gale said: “I’m very pleased to come away with a win. We had 7 players in the squad today who were under 23 years of age and as a coaching team we feel we are doing our best to develop the young players in the area which augurs well for the future of the Club.”

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