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Red-hot Reds defrost Porth

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Llanelli Town AFC 4

AFC Porth 0

IT WAS touch and go as to whether the Reds’ game against AFC Porth got underway on Saturday (Jan 21), following an evening of heavy frost.

Eddie Donne and his team did a remarkable job of heating up the pitch with Heath Robinson materials and just before 2pm, the officials gave the thumbs up for the game. It was still bitterly cold despite the beautiful sunshine and blue sky over Stebonheath as the Reds took on AFC Porth in what looked on paper to be a tough match for the Reds.

As most visiting teams have found out this season, what it looks like on paper and what it looks like on the beautifully green Stebonheath turf is a completely different story. New signing James Loveridge was on the bench and that man Lee Trundle was in the starting 11. It didn’t take long for Trundle to bring some warmth to the Stebo crowd.

Despite being marked by at least three men wherever he went and after being bundled over a couple of times, he was gifted a free kick on the edge of the box. He curled the ball around a few players and although it looked like it may have taken a slight deflection off a Porth player, Trundle was credited with the goal.

Jordan Follows looked a little more comfortable and confident on the ball with the return of his more physical partner in crime and just before half time, Follows found plenty of space down the left running at pace to belt the ball past the Porth keeper to make it 2-0 to Llanelli AFC at half time. The unbeaten run didn’t really look to be in much danger and despite Porth sitting close to the top of League Division 2, they really looked to be the underdogs and lacked the bark and bite to worry the in-form Reds side.

Following a welcome cup of tea and a cheeky garibaldi, the supporters and the teams ventured back out into the cold but sunny stadium for the second half. James Loveridge came on as substitute and it was easy to see why he had been signed. He showed plenty of pace and made some blistering runs in front of the stand, much to the approval of the home fans. He combined with Trundle on a couple of occasions and came close to scoring and if it weren’t for the skills of the Porth keeper, he could have had at least two goals. ‘Coulda shoulda woulda’, as my deputy editor says, is not good enough. It was Lee Bevan who put his head to a beautiful cross, sending the ball past a grasping Porth keeper for the third goal of the match. The Reds ‘coulda’ been forgiven for taking their feet off the gas with a 3-0 lead but this team wanted to totally defrost the crowd as they turned up the heat another notch as gas mark number 10 Lee Trundle slotted home the final goal to make the final score Llanelli Town AFC 4 – AFC Porth 0.

Following the game, The Herald spoke to some of the people involved at Stebo, including Director David Craddock. We asked him what the prospects for the Reds were, given their unbeaten run. He said: “It was an excellent win against tough opposition. They were very physical but we played exceptionally well.

“Next week, we will have to run and run against a good professional outfit, The New Saints. James Loveridge is a new signing and he has pace. I have known him and his family for a number of years. He is a Llanelli boy and that is important for us.

“The club is very buoyant and everything is going well. We have some great staff in the background. This is our best ever season. We are hoping to get the academy going next year and we hope to incorporate 15 teams next year – boys and girls.”

Speaking after the game, Llanelli manager Andy Hill said: “There was a bit of doubt about the pitch this morning but Eddie did a great job in getting it ready.

“It was a good win and we are really pleased. We have had three clean sheets on the bounce but the game against New Saints will be a massive task. James Loveridge looked sharp today and hopefully he can get more game time.

“We are training twice this week to prepare for the cup match. We have a full strength squad and that is a great position to be in.”

Lee Trundle is available for Llanelli duty next week. Speaking to The Herald after the game, he said: “We expected a tough game from one of the top league clubs but we dominated from start to finish.

“James Loveridge showed some presence when he came on. He hasn’t had any games and he hasn’t had much training time but with a couple of games under his belt, he will be a great signing.

“I am available to play next week because the Swans are playing on Sunday. We will go to the Saints believing that we can win the game. “

Llanelli are now unbeaten in the league and in the cup. They sit at the top of League Division 2 with 37 points.

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Sport

Dafen seal dramatic win over Evans and Williams

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DAFEN picked up only their third win in the West Wales Premier League on Saturday (Jan 22) as a 102nd minute goal from Joe Bowen gave them a 3-2 victory.

After an even start it was Dafen who broke the deadlock as Lennon Evans scored shortly before the half hour mark.

It remained 1-0 to the visitors until the 73rd minute when Alex Goddard scored to double Dafen’s lead.

With seven minutes to go the hosts were awarded a penalty and Mark Howells made no mistake to bring his side back in the game.

On 90 minutes Dafen manager Richard Stephens was sent off by the referee and just four minutes later Bruno Forkuoh scored to level the game for the home side.

The drama wasn’t over there though as in the eleventh minute of injury time, Evans and Williams’ Phillip Tinnuche was also sent off.

And there was still time for Bowen to score the winning goal, in the 12th minute of time added on, sparking joyous scenes amongst the players.

Dafen remain second bottom but they now sit two points behind ninth placed Morriston Town.

Defeat for Evans and Williams sees them slip behind West Wales Premier League leaders Penlan, who won again on Saturday.

On Saturday, January 29, Dafen host Giants Grave while Evans and Williams travel to Seven Sisters Onllwyn.

PHOTO by Darren Harries

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Burry Port hold off Milford to maintain unbeaten record

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BURRY PORT secured their fourth win in as many games on Saturday (Jan 22) as they beat Milford Haven 24-17 at The Observatory.

It was a frantic first half which saw Burry Port take a 24-12 lead into the break and despite a second half try from the home side, the Blacks were able to hang on for the win.

Tries for the Blacks came from Rich Parker, Josh Evans, Dylan Evans and Tom Rees.

Steff Powell was successful with two of four conversion attempts.

Milford had one try from Jamie Lewis and Dan McClelland with one conversion giving the hosts some hope of a second half comeback.

Zac France-Miller pulled an unconverted try back for the Mariners but they were unable to find another score despite their efforts.

The Blacks held on and their bonus-point win moves them up to fifth place in the League 2 West table and maintains their 100% record.

The Mariners earned a bonus point for their efforts which moves them up to third from bottom in the table.

On Saturday, January 29, Burry Port host Loughor while Milford Haven are away to Kidwelly.

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Llanelli Snooker League: Convincing win for Burry Port Legion

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BURRY PORT Legion notched a convincing 6-1 victory in the Llanelli Snooker first division against visiting Pontyberem Workmens.

Following frame wins from Rob Davies, Richard Nurse, Garnet Lane, Keri Phillips and James White (40 break); just Emyr Bowen’s frame averted the whitewash.

Snooker World Whites were 5-2 winners against Llanelli Cons, after Jamie Gimblett, Callum Jackson, Sam Hinton and Ben Thomas had won.

Dai Roberts and Ashley Edwards claimed frames for Matchroom Whites in a 5-2 reversal against Llanesco, for whom Luke Lloyd, Peter Shoulder, Dale Bohn and Chris Lloyd were on song.

Nicky Walters, Mark Hughes and J.Shields were on top for Upper Tumble Blues who saw off a man-short Ponthenri Social 5-2; Nigel Lewis and Mark Regola replied.

Burry Port Reading Room Blues, for whom Adrian Gower, Steve Greaney and Neil Roberts (25) won, needed the aggregate to edge a 4-3 victory at Morfa, whose winning trio were Rob Hughes, Andrew Hatto and Gavin Lewis.

Elsewhere, Pontyberem Workmens’ also required the extra point to nick a 4-3 success against Trimsaran, after Keri Davies (35 clearance break), Kevin Sullivan and Mike Footman had won; Lewis Lloyd, Jamie Tudor and Wayne Thomas won for Trim.

Cross Hands B overcame Gorseinon Workmens’ 4-3, following wins from Adrian Phillips, Mal Jones and Paul Martin; for the Brighton Road side, Mike Davies, Johnny Wilcox and Jordan Davies were on the ball.

In Division 2, Jeff Howells, Scott Bunford, Elwyn Williams and Adam Rees gave Cross Hands A a 5-2 win at Pontarddulais Cons B; Bont’s frame winners were Mark Aberstraw (40 break) and Rob Davey.

Huw Morgan, Howard Wood, Steve Pearson and Brian Jenn earned the bragging rights for Llandybie Social B in the village derby against Llandybie RFC, whose winning duo were Shane Wright (22 clearance) and Joshua Jordan.

Upper Tumble Reds suffered a 7-0 thumping away at the Gremlin Club; for the latter, Ray Barney (33 clearance), Alex Jenson (25), Ryan Burt, Kevin Gronow, Lee Collins and Gavin Stollery were all on top.

Meanwhile, J.Townsend’s frame win avoided the dreaded brush as Bryn & Trallwm crashed 6-1 at the hands of Snooker World Blues; for the Ammanford cuemen, Linden Cox, C.Waters, A.Jones, Callum Fuge and S.Rees all won.

New Lodge edged home 4-3 against Matchroom Blacks, courtesy of Roy Morgan, Andrew John and Gary Williams; Thomas Williams, James Anthony and Adrian Davies hit back for the visitors.

Paul Landek and James Varney were CGMD ‘s winning pair as the Fishermens’ went down 5-2 on their trip to Tycroes RFC; for the rugby club, Marc Walters, Steve Ruck, Arwyn Rees and Ffion Jones claimed the points.

In Cup news, Gremlins defeated New Lodge 4-3, while Reading Room Reds knocked out Bryn. Matchroom Reds beat Burry Port Legion 4-3, whereas Upper Tumble Social went out 4-1 at the hands of Matchroom Whites.

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