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Llanelli Town march on

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FOLLOWING on from their stunning midweek defeat of championship rivals Ammanford, the Reds made heavy weather of seeing off opponents who were there for the taking, failing to capitalise on innumerable chances to boost their goals for tally.

When Luke Jones fired them ahead as early as the third minute, it appeared to be a case of how many more would be accrued, but it transpired it would not be that clear cut, with a combination of desperate defending by the visitors allied with a number of glaring misses keeping the final score down to reasonable proportions.

Jones took his goal brilliantly, latching on to a free kick and making space before firing beyond keeper Asa Kirkwood, while Anton Owens might well have doubled the lead within minutes, but fired wide of the target when he met a driven cross from Richard Lewis.

Kirkwood was being kept fully occupied, blocking in quick succession efforts by Robert Thomas and Matthew Hughes, while a surging run from Lewis culminated in a shot which rebounded off the upright with the keeper beaten.

There were strong appeals for a Reds penalty following a run by Owens which took him around Kirkwood before his delivery into the middle was driven goalwards where it appeared to be handled by a Treowen defender, but referee Ben Williams waved play on.

A cross into the goalmouth by Steve Berry failed to find the head of Owens, but four minutes from the break the home side deservedly went further ahead. A fine run by Ross Jones led to a cross to the far post which Hughes met with a header, although Kirkwood got a hand to it, he couldn’t prevent it crossing the line.

Comfortably ahead going into the second half, the Reds went close again early after the restart, with Luke Jones sending his finish just the wrong side of the near post. With eight minutes gone the lead was stretched further, with Owens converting from close range after another ball from Ross Jones following some positive approach work.

The visitors had barely offered a credible threat, their best offer stemming from a ball by Chris Jones across the goalmouth which failed to pick out a colleague.

The Reds were looking to increase their advantage, with Owens narrowly failing to connect with a Lewis delivery to the far post, but just after the hour their opponents managed to reduce the deficit following a rare attack. Craig Richards in the home goal blocked from Ricky Amos, but on gathering the rebound, Amos squared the loose ball into the path of Stephen Parfitt for an easy tap-in.

Despite this unexpected setback, the home side were still well on top and could have added to their tally with Kellan Jenkins playing in Owens but his finish was off target, while Kirkwood cut out a Hughes attempt at his near post with home players in more advantageous positions in the middle.

The contest ended with another valuable three points for the hosts despite their laboured efforts in achieving them, and they travel to meet Newport Civil Service next Saturday hoping to extend their advantage at the top of the table. Kick off is at 2.30pm.

TEAMS

LLANELLI TOWN: Richards; Napieralla; Lewis; Berry (Bauza, 84); Evans; Bevan ©; Owens; R. Jones; L. Jones (Jenkins, 64); Thomas (John, 74); Hughes; Subs not used; Powell; Scammell.

TREOWEN STARS: Kirkwood; Parfitt ©; Dando (Thomas, 6); James; Harris; Randall; Coote; Brewer; Amos; Jones; Golding (Blake, 78); Sub not used; Evans.

REFEREE: Ben Williams (Milford Haven).

ATTENDANCE: 84. COLEG SIR GÂR’S rugby academy is enjoying another successful season with both their 15 a-side and 7’s teams excelling in recent weeks.

The 1st XV secured their place in the WRU colleges/schools elite league final with a 39–17 win over local rivals Llandovery College.

Flying wing Gethin Gibby was the star of the show scoring four tries in what was a very impressive away victory. This victory ensured the college would finish top of the league and therefore secured their place in the final which will be played at the Millennium Stadium on April 29.

Building upon this momentum, the 7s team recently won Cambrian (Llandovery College) 7’s tournament. Coleg Sir Gâr remained unbeaten all day and had impressive victories over Coleg y Cymoedd, 31-19, before a 26-19 final victory over tournament favourites Millfield. Tom Neale the Sir Gâr 7’s specialist was impressive throughout and was named player of the tournament. Sir Gar’s development

team also excelled in the tournament beating Gower College Swansea’s first team before narrowly losing to Coleg Y Cymoedd in the cup competition’s quarter final.

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Raiders seal first ever win

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West Wales Raiders 44

Coventry Bears 16

Lucas Marshall, Stebonheath Park,

A LATE rally by Coventry Bears was not enough to deny a jubilant West Wales Raiders their first-ever win at the 45th time of asking.

The old South Wales Ironmen tasted victory against Gloucestershire All Golds in the first match played at Stebonheath Park back in July 2017, but never before have the side won under the Raiders banner. And it was certainly worth the wait as the Raiders dominated much of the game against a Bears side that doesn’t have the best record when travelling to South Wales. The other game the Ironmen won in 2017 was against Coventry, whilst the Bears only won by 10 points at Llanelli last season.

Dewi Billingham made his Coventry debut while trialist Zak Williams made his first appearance since returning to the Bears. But both former Raiders stars were unable to come back to haunt their former employers.

Try time: Raiders celebrate another try. Photo by Darren Harries

Much of the damage was done in the first half with the Raiders taking control from the kick-off and eventually going in 20-0 up at the break.

It took only six minutes for Raiders to break the Bears defence when good work down the left put Dalton Desmond-Walker in for the opener. Phil Cowburn added the extras but was off target just moments later after Ash Bateman was on the end of some quick passing to go in on the right.

When Morgan Evans went in for the Raiders third, again converted by Cowburn, their loyal band of supporters started to believe they were on course for victory.

It could have been even worse for the Bears, but strong defence saw them hold the visitors up over the line on three occasions mid-way through the half. Although there was no denying Archie Snook with one of the final plays of the half after Welsh International Steve Parry had split the Bears defence to put the centre through. Cowburn once again failed with the conversion but the Raiders still celebrated their most positive 40 minutes in almost two years.

After the break, it was the Bears who struck first through Reece Rance, but any hopes of a comeback were soon extinguished by three quick-fire tries.

First, former Bears player Mitch Shaw scooted over, before Bateman and Snook both got their second try of the afternoon to all but secure the victory for the Llanelli-based outfit.

Parry then went in for the Raiders’ eighth try of the day to put the icing on a long-awaited cake.

But the Bears were by no means done and added two further tries of their own to make the scoreline look a little less dominate than the game suggested.

Tries from Errol Carter and South Wales youth system graduate Cobi Green, along with two Joe Sanderson conversions rounded off the scoring for the visitors.

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Dafen see off Porthcawl

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DAFEN Seconds earned their sixth win of the season on Saturday (Jul 6) as they beat Porthcawl by 75 runs.

Porthcawl won the toss and elected to field and they were able to bowl Dafen out for 182.

Opener Oliver Evans made a score of 19 and Chris Randell scored 25 as a number of Dafen batsmen made good starts.

Jonathan Griffiths scored 22 and there were also scores of 15 from Tom Lavender and 16 from Luke Dunning.

Matthew Thomas made a late score of 18 while Andrew Randell top scored with 43 runs.

Nicholas Morgan was the pick of the bowlers with three wickets for the loss of 30 runs from his 6.3 overs.

Mark Bevan also bowled well to finish with figures of 3-37.

Photos by Darren Harries

That set Porthcawl 138 to win but they lost a number of batsmen for single figure scores as they struggled to put runs on the board.

Andrew Randell had Nicholas Morgan caught by Jac Morgan and Matthew Thomas had Rhodri Phillips caught by Chris Randell.

Chris Richards made a score of 13 before he was bowled by Rhys Marchant who then also bowled Rob Warren and had David Lewis caught by Chris Randell, both for ducks.

Tim Richards also fell for a duck when he was caught off the bowling of Matthew Thomas.

Mark Lewis had scored 25 but he also fell to the bowling of Marchant.

Steffan Flood also scored 25 before he was bowled by Chris Randell and Joshua Aubrey added 20 late on before he also fell to the bowling of Randell.

That meant that Porthcawl were all out for 107, giving Dafen seconds an excellent win.

On Saturday (Jul 13), Dafen seconds are away to local rivals Llanelli seconds.

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Rees century sees Llanelli to win

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LLANELLI’s Iwan Rees scored a century on Saturday (Jul 6) to help his side to victory over Briton Ferry Steel.

Briton Ferry won the toss and elected to bat but they were restricted to 186-8 in their innings.

Steven Devonald struck early on to remove Evan Hynes but Lloyd Clement and Jamie Griffiths shared 44 runs for the second wicket.

Jac Rees had Griffiths caught by Craig Howells on a score of 24 and soon after Craig Evans was bowled by Aled Gilley for a duck.

Clement had made a score of 41 but when he was bowled by Rees, the Steel found themselves on 81-4.

That soon became 88-5 as Steve Maddock was caught by Marcus Leaf off the bowling of Gilley.

Photo by Darren Harries

Iwan Rees then had Steffan Evans caught by Howells and Rhys Norgrove fell in similar fashion.

Jason Hughes and Thomas Williams shared 56 runs for the eighth wicket as they looked to give their side a total to defend.

On the last ball Williams was caught by Rees off the bowling of Gilley on a score of 24 which left Hughes not out on 67.

Llanelli openers Iwan Rees and Ioan Phillips shared 42 runs for the first wicket before Phillips was caught by Rhys Norgrove off the bowling of Jay Webb.

That was as good as it got for the Steel though as they were unable to claim any further wickets.

Craig Howells hit seven fours as he finished unbeaten on 53 while Rees starred with 14 fours to finish unbeaten on 104.

The win gives Llanelli 19 points and keeps them third in the table. On Saturday (Jul 13), they travel to local rivals Dafen.

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