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Duggie Morris Cup Final preview: Neyland v Pembroke

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THIS Sunday (Jul 17) Neyland take on Pembroke in the final of the Duggie Morris Cup.

Division 2 side Pembroke take on current Division 1 champions Neyland over two innings each with the game being played at Burton.

Neyland have enjoyed success in the Duggie Morris over recent years while Pembroke have said they are in it to win it.

It promises to be another exciting final and the game gets underway at 12pm.

ROUTE TO THE FINAL

Pembroke began their route to the final with a four wicket win over Lamphey. Lamphey had scored 165-1 in their innings but Pembroke were able to reach their target to seal a place in the second round.

They then came up against Division 1 side St Ishmaels. Pembroke scored 168-5 first up before restricting Tish to 147-8 in reply.

In the semi-final, Pembroke beat Narberth by eight wickets. Narberth scored 165-7 but Pembroke’s Jack Harries scored 83 not out to see his side into the final.

It will be Pembroke’s first final for 17 years and they are keen to go on and win it.

Neyland’s run to the final saw them begin with an eight-wicket win over Cresselly. Cresselly had scored 155-6 in their innings but Neyland were able to reach their target to go through to the quarter finals.

In the next round they played Haverfordwest at home. Neyland scored 147-8 in their innings and it looked like Town were going on to win the game.

However a superb final over saw Neyland seal victory by two runs to go through to the semis.

They came up against last year’s winners Lawrenny in the last four. Neyland scored 137-5 in their innings before bowling Lawrenny out for 106 to book their place in the final.

WHAT THE CAPTAINS SAY

Neyland captain Sean Hannon said: “We are looking forward to playing the final again after our last appearance in 2019. It wasn’t played in 2020 because of Covid and we got knocked out in the early rounds in 2021.

“The competition has been great for us over the years and we always enjoy the occasion so this one will be no different. Congratulations to Pembroke on making the final, there wouldn’t have been many division two sides getting to the final before, so they deserve a huge amount of credit for getting this far.

“They will obviously be trying to go one step further and win it so we certainly won’t be underestimating them in what I’m sure will be a good hard fought final.”

Pembroke captain Jack Harris said: “If you would have told us at the start of the season that we’d be playing a Duggie Morris final we would have just laughed. In all seriousness, the run that we’ve been on to get to this stage is exactly what the club deserves for all its hard work both on and off the field in previous seasons.

“Its going to be a proud moment for myself to captain a final for the club I’ve been brought up with, and to follow in my fathers’ footsteps of being the second Harries to captain a Duggie Morris final. Pembroke have never won the Duggie Morris and it’s been 17 years since our last cup final, so we will be throwing 200% at this game to try and be the first Pembroke side that do. We will have huge support no doubt from our very own ‘Barmy Army’ on the day!!

“Obviously, our opponents on the day are a strong outfit. Neyland have been winning silverware for years and years now and no doubt will be a tough opponent on Sunday. I’m fully expecting a very tough game against a strong Neyland side that will test us to our limit.

“We’ve been the underdogs all the way through the competition so far, and taken down 2 first division sides already, including the new league leaders Narberth in the Semi-final, so I believe there will be no pressure on us.

“Its down to us now to go that one step further and make it a day to remember for Pembroke CC. We’re not there to make up the numbers, we’re there to win.”

Sport

Castrol Team aims to ‘bounce back’ from Jim Clark Rally retirement

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THE CASTROL MEM RALLY TEAM is vowing to bounce back stronger than ever on the next round of the Probite British Rally Championship – especially with a second Toyota GR Yaris Rally2 joining its motorsport fleet soon – after what was looking like another victory turned into retirement on the Beatson’s Building Supplies Jim Clark Rally.

Chris Ingram started extremely well, setting the fastest time on the opening four stages to establish a healthy 23.1 second lead in his Volkswagen Polo GTI R5. The 2019 FIA European rally champion eased off on the unfamiliar closed roads as darkness fell and the rain continued to make the surface extremely slippery, settling for second fastest time on SS5 and 6 and going into Friday’s overnight halt with an 8.6 second advantage. 
 
Co-driven by Alex Kihurani, the Suisscourtage-backed driver set another fastest time on Saturday’s opening stage before a slow puncture saw him stop with damaged suspension after SS8.
 
Meirion Evans lost time when he spun his Toyota GR Yaris Rally2 on SS2, initiating some immediate set up changes in first service to better suit the wet and slippery conditions. He and co-driver Jonathan Jackson completed Leg 1 in a strong eighth position and had just moved up to sixth when the car’s power steering pump sprung an oil leak and the Welshman was forced to call it a day after SS9.
 
Meirion Evans said: “Unfortunately it wasn’t the end to the rally that we had hoped for. We were beginning to make tracks up the leaderboard and had a chance of getting on the podium, but at the end of Saturday’s third stage we had a problem with the power steering which meant that we couldn’t continue. Whilst we might have been able to limp through the next stage, the issue would have been too big to fix in service anyway, so we decided to call it a day. It’s a shame that Chris retired from the lead as it was looking like another very good result for the team, but I’m sure we’ll bounce back stronger on the next round.”
 
Chris Ingram said: “We had a very strong start to the rally and had controlled our pace well to build a comfortable lead ahead of previous Jim Clark Rally winner Keith Cronin. It was thoroughly enjoyable in the car. Unfortunately, after setting another fastest time on Saturday’s opening stage, on the next stage we picked up a slow puncture and went off the road under braking, which broke the front left suspension. It’s a tough result for the team, but the potential showed makes me very excited for the rest of the season and the switch to the Toyota GR Yaris Rally2.”
 
Round 4 of the Probite British Rally Championship is the Voyonic Grampian Forest Rally on 9 August, when the Castrol MEM Rally Team will field two Toyota GR Yaris Rally2s for Meirion Evans/Jonathan Jackson and Chris Ingram/Alex Kihurani.

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News

Red Bull Hardline Wales confirms rider list for 2024

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RED BULL Hardline, known as the most challenging downhill mountain bike race world wide, confirms the final rider list for this year’s Wales event. 

Following its first event overseas, with a stop Down Under, Red Bull Hardline returns to its home in Wales’ Dyfi valley to celebrate its 10th anniversary. The brainchild of Dan Atherton a decade ago, 34 of the brightest and best talents in downhill mountain biking are set to descend on the north Wales course. With the 2023 event sadly curtailed by the Welsh weather, there’s old scores to settle and it’s all to play for in 2024.

Confirmed Rider List:

NameNationality
Ronan DunneIRL
Bernard KerrUK
Brook MacDonaldNZL
Charlie HattonUK
Adam BraytonUK
Craig EvansUK
Theo ErlangsenSA
Matteo IniguezFRA
Juanfer VelezCOL
Gaetan VigeFRA
Jim MonroUK
Matt JonesUK
Edgar BrioleFRA
George BranniganNZ
Sam GaleNZ
Jono JonesUK
Sam BlenkinsopNZ
Brendan FaircloughUK
Josh BrycelandUK
Dennis LuffmanUK
Sam HockenhullUK
Josh LoweUK
Taylor VernonUK
Thibault LalyFRA
Thomas GenonBEL
Szymon GodziekPOL
Sebastian HolguinCOL
Alex StorrUK
Vincent TupinFRA
Harry MolloyUK
Matteo IniguezFRA

Female riders will begin training on Monday, giving them ample time to familiarise themselves with the new course, with Tahnée Seagrave, Cami Nogueira and Hannah Bergmann all set to continue to push the boundaries of their sport once again. Louise-Anna Ferguson will be returning to Wales fresh from her success at Red Bull Hardline Tasmania, putting on a gutsy performance to finish a full finals race run despite an early crash. New to Red Bull Hardline, Vaea Verbeeck will make her first appearance, bringing fresh fire power to the women’s lineup 

Following his stand-out success at Red Bull Hardline Tasmania, Ronan Dunne will be taking to the start line with aims of achieving the double. Nipping at his heels will be three-time winner Bernard Kerr, who placed second in Tasmania back in February. 2017 champion Craig Evans is back once again and eager to replicate his success of 7 years previous.

The breathtaking race will be broadcasted live globally on Red Bull TV on Sunday 2nd June at 2.30pm GMT. Ahead of the event, fans can enjoy the week’s best action from course walk and practice on the Red Bull Bike YouTube ahead of the main event. 

For further Red Bull Hardline rider updates and for more information visit www.redbull.com/hardline and make sure to save the link to Red Bull Bike YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@RedBullBike/featured to not miss out on the week’s best action.

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Scarlets sign Welsh-qualified full-back Ellis Mee from Nottingham

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THE SCARLETS have added to their squad for the 2024-25 season with the signing of Welsh-qualified Nottingham full-back Ellis Mee.

The 20-year-old, who can play full-back or wing, will link up with the squad in the summer and becomes the third addition to Dwayne Peel’s squad for the new campaign.

Standing at 6ft 4in and 92kg, Mee enjoyed an outstanding first season in the English Championship, culminating in him winning Nottingham’s players’, fans’ and overall player-of-the-season awards.

He has been combining his rugby career with studies at Nottingham Trent University.

Scarlets head coach Dwayne Peel said: “Ellis has impressed us with his form for Nottingham this season, he is a powerful runner, strong in the air and knows his way to the try line. We are looking forward to him joining us for pre-season in the summer.

“He will be part of a group of young Welsh backs who we are excited about for the coming years. The likes of Tomi Lewis, Eddie James, Joe Roberts and Tom Rogers have had a lot of rugby for us this season, Jac Davies has been outstanding for Llandovery before his injury and it was great to see Macs Page make his debut in Parma last weekend.

“There is a crop of talented young Welsh backs coming through who have a huge amount of potential and we are looking forward to seeing Ellis challenge for a place in the side next season.”

Ellis Mee said: “Scarlets are an amazing club with great history and I can’t wait to be a part of it.

“Signing for Scarlets is an excellent opportunity for me to better myself in a higher league and against different opposition.

“I am really looking forward to starting this next chapter of my career.”

Ellis is the third new signing to be announced by the Scarlets ahead of next season, joining Toyota Cheetahs hooker Marnus van der Merwe and Exeter Chiefs prop Alec Hepburn with more arrivals set to be announced in the coming weeks.

Sam Lousi, Tom Rogers, Harri O’Connor, Dan Davis and Ben Williams have also signed new deals with the club.

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