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Town held by bottom club Chepstow

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Welsh League Division Two

Chepstow Town 1

Llanelli Town 1

Liam Samuel: Gave Town the lead

Liam Samuel: Gave Town the lead

A LOT OF WATER has passed under the bridge since the two sides met at Stebonheath on the opening day of the season, with the Reds romping home with a 7-1 scoreline.

That result was to prove to be a pointer as far as Chepstow were concerned, as since then they have recorded just three wins and a draw after 22 matches and seem destined for life in the third division next season.

By contrast, the Reds have had a satisfactory season by and large, currently occupying fifth spot in the table, and will be hoping for greater success in the 2016/17 campaign.

Considering the contrasting positions of the clubs, the home side will be the more satisfied of the two at earning a point, while their opponents, despite taking the lead, just could not find a second goal which would have probably seen them safely home.

This was due in no small part to the heroics of Simon Martin in the Chepstow goal, who brought off a number of outstanding saves to deny the visitors.

Early pressure by the Reds saw Jamie Evans direct his header from a Mark Napieralla cross over the top, and when Bruno Forkuoh was sent clear down the right by Robert Thomas, his intended pass to Evans was cut out by a defender.

Martin clawed out a Richard Lewis delivery from under the bar, before he was beaten in the 20th minute following a throw in which led to a ball across the face of goal which the keeper diverted away but only as far as Liam Samuel, who lashed it into the net from close range.

Well in control, the visitors continued to press forward with Evans just failing to connect with a header from a Ross Jones cross, while Martin got down at full stretch to brilliantly keep out a Jandir Zola effort which was destined for the bottom corner.

He then repeated the effort shortly after, somehow managing to deny Robert Thomas when his header seemed destined for the target from a Samuel assist.

With just the solitary success to show for their overall superiority at the break, the visitors were the first to threaten after the restart with Forkuoh firing just wide, and Samuel having his well struck effort blocked by Mark Roberts in the area.

As the half progressed, Chepstow were certainly enjoying greater possession than in the first period without really looking too threatening, but this all changed when the Reds lost the ball in midfield and it was cleared up to the inside left channel where it was collected by Nathan Murphy, and despite the attentions of Chris Thomas, he made ground before directing his finish past Steve Stone in the Reds` goal after 76 minutes.

With the match evenly poised, there was little further goalmouth action in the closing quarter of the contest, and the final whistle came with the home side by far the happier of the teams, while their opponents reflected that three points had been spurned.

The Reds travel to meet Croesyceiliog on Saturday, kick off 2.30 p.m.

Teams:

Chepstow Town: Martin; Roberts; Turner© (Swift, 63); Barry (Nesbitt, 20); Clinton; M. Owen; Herbert; Watson; Tertois (Chimes, 69); Murphy; Kavanagh.

Subs not used: N. Owen; Livermore.

Llanelli Town: Stone; Napieralla (Bauza, 72); Lewis; Zola; C. Thomas; Bevan ©; Forkuoh; (Hughes, 69); R. Jones; Evans; R. Thomas; Samuel.

Subs not used: Harries; Martin.

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Davies to captain Scarlets for 2021/22 season

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WALES international and British & Irish Lion Jonathan ‘Fox’ Davies will captain the Scarlets for the 2021-22 season.

Former Ysgol Dyffryn Taf pupil Davies has played 170 matches for the Scarlets since making his debut in 2006 and is one of the most decorated centres in international rugby having won 91 caps for Wales and represented the Lions in the Test series in Australia 2013 and New Zealand in 2017.

It will be his second stint wearing the Scarlets armband having been a co-captain along with Rob McCusker in 2013.

‘Foxy’ takes the reins from hooker Ken Owens who led the Scarlets for a record-equalling seven successive seasons.

“Jon is one of the most respected players in the game, someone with a huge amount of experience at all levels,” said Scarlets head coach Dwayne Peel

“He has been a leader amongst our group for a number of years now and certainly since I have been here his leadership qualities have been there for all to see, on and off the training field.

“Foxy is the ultimate professional – when he speaks people listen. The way he conducts himself is an example to every player in the squad.

“He has been a big part of this club for a long time; he has grown up in the region, played his junior rugby here and it is clear that wearing the Scarlets jersey means a huge amount to him.”

Paying tribute to Davies’s predecessor Owens, Peel added: “Ken has been a fantastic leader for us over the last seven years and will continue to have a huge part to play in the leadership of this group.”

Davies, who captained Wales during the recent summer internationals in Cardiff, said: “It is a massive honour to be handed the Scarlets captaincy, you only have to look at the captain’s board to see so many great players and icons of the game who have led the club.

“I am fortunate that there will be a strong leadership group around me – British & Irish Lions and experienced Wales internationals who have enjoyed success at domestic and Test level. Those players also know there is a hard-working, driven group of youngsters pushing them for the jersey. There is a really exciting mix to the squad.”

Davies added: “Winning the PRO12 title with the Scarlets four years ago remains one of the highlights of my career and there is a real ambition and hunger among the players and coaching group to reach those levels again.

“There has been a good buzz about pre-season, the boys have worked really hard and we’re all looking forward to the start of the new URC season in Edinburgh on Saturday.

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Scarlets appoint Phil John as Academy coach

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FORMER prop Phil John is back at the Scarlets having been appointed to the role of Academy skills coach.

John made 330 Scarlets appearances over 17 seasons and holds the record for the most Scarlets matches played in the regional era.

Since hanging up his playing boots following his final game against Glasgow in 2016, he has worked with the RGC 1404 Academy and alongside another ex-Scarlet Mark Jones with the Premiership team in North Wales.

He also has experience coaching with the Llanelli RFC Premiership side and as an assistant to Danny Wilson for the Scarlets.

John, who started out on a rugby apprenticeship scheme at Stradey Park, replaces Emyr Phillips who becomes the Scarlets transition coach overseeing the academy players who are training with the senior side.

“It’s good to be back at Parc y Scarlets and I’m looking forward to working with a talented group of young players who have bright futures in the game,” said John.

“When you look at the players who were in the Academy five years ago when I was here, they are now starting week in week out for the Scarlets, it is great to see the journeys they have been on.

“The Scarlets Academy has a proud tradition of being a production line for the senior side and I’m excited by this opportunity to help make sure that continues.”

Scarlets Development Pathway Manager Kevin George added: “For us, this appointment was about getting the balance right in the coaching group with Emyr having been promoted to oversee the transition players.

“We had a lot of interest in the post and Phil, with his experience working with academies and the commitment he gave to North Wales, came out very strongly. We are delighted to have him on board to help nurture the next generation of Scarlets.”

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Five-star Felinfoel sink Tumble

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FELINFOEL kept up their unbeaten start to the season on Saturday (Sept 18) as they beat Tumble 5-2 at the King George playing fields in Division 1 of the Carmarthenshire football league.

However, they didn’t have it all their own way as Tumble took the lead after five minutes through Matthew James.

Foel kept plugging away and were rewarded when Chris James hit a 25-yard shot that was fumbled over the line by the keeper to make it 1-1.

Some good passing football then put Sam Ashford through on goal to put the ball past the keeper and make it 2-1 to the home side.

They weren’t done there as Chris James made it 3-1 with a great header.

In the second half, both sides were looking to score again but it was Foel who got their fourth when Mathew Ellis supplied top goal scorer Jordan Badman with the pass to make it 4-1.

Five minutes later the roles were reversed when Badman played in Mathew Ellis to make it 5-1.

To Tumble’s credit they kept plugging away and were rewarded with a goal two minutes from time as James scored his second of the game.

It was a great strike from James but it mattered little as Foel came away with the 5-2 win and their unbeaten record still intact.

On Saturday (Sept 25), Felinfoel are at hoem again as they host Bancffosfelen, kick off at 2pm.

Tumble are also in action as they travel to Llangennech.

Photo by Darren Harries

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