Sporting Snippets - Part 8

Today we turn back the sporting pages of the old West Wales Guardian to show some instances of local sports people making a few faux pas – and a story of bravery in adversity on the cricket pitch from a smashing lady. Enjoy your walk down memory Lane with our latest snippets!

Photography is definitely NOT Huw’s forte!

Huw BevanHuw Bevan is highly regarded for his backroom work at Clarbeston Road and rightly so because after finishing as a player he has been involved at all levels with the club and been a great supporter of ladies and disability football. But my mole at Clarbie tells me that there is no chance of him ever switching to be a sports photographer . . .
Huw Bevan’s son Tom has done brilliantly to be included as a referee on the EUFA Development Group for Wales and one of his games at the end of last season was to be assistant ref for the Wales versus Poland under 17 girls international at Carmarthen Town. Naturally, Huw went along to give support and Tom asked dad to take a picture of the players and officials lined up prior to the start of the game as a nice memento.

Tom couldn’t wait to see the photo at the end of the match, when all was revealed – Huw had stood at the wrong side of the pitch so was almost 60 metres away and only had a long-range snap of the rear ends of all involved.

Tom is still chuckling about it now – and it will be some time before he trusts his camera at important events to Bevan Snr because Huw clearly needs a little practice first!


Which is our dressing room?

Mark GeorgeI’ve always had a job telling the difference between Mark and Matthew George, something they have enjoyed and I’m never sure to this day which one is which – so when I attributed this little story to Mark it could well have been Matthew!
Staying in the Fishguard area for a moment longer, it seems that Mark George has had his leg pulled with Fishguard RFC and quite rightly so! Mark plays alongside twin brother Matthew and both were involved in the recent game against Bryncethin to celebrate the opening of the palatial new changing facilities at the Phoenix Centre – but was unavoidably late to the match. He rushed over to club chairman James Morgans and asked which changing room was being used by the Seagulls – and Mogs pointed him to the posh new glass door on which is engraved in six-inch high letters ‘Home Changing Room’!

Mark quickly trotted over to get changed but has had his leg pulled since – so come on you Fishguard rugby players – it could have happened to anyone of you! (And they all chorus ‘No, it could only happen to Mark George!’).


. . . Little sympathy for Jackie from her family!


Jackie WilliamsJackie Williams was for a long time one of the lady cricketers in Pembrokeshire who was good enough to play in the men’s version of the game (and I always maintained she was better than hubbie Andrew at Herbrandston Cricket Club.)

She had the necessary capacity to battle on regardless and this  story shows just that, but was also a terrific supporter of the game and a great help to old reporters like me!
At the end of the cricket season one of the ‘walking wounded’ undoubtedly was Jackie Williams, who does a great job of coaching girls’ cricket in the county and doubles up as one of the few ladies playing men’s cricket every Saturday as she bats for Herbrandston 2nds.

Jackie hates wearing a cricketing helmet, not because it spoils her hair but she finds it limits her vision – but she might have to change her view after being hit in the face recently, not once but TWICE!

Her first bang on the bonce left her with a nasty bruise on the side of her head which left her going off to hospital for a check-up, looking as if she had just bumped into Mike Tyson.

But Jackie is nothing if not a battler and she was soon back in action, playing well until she top-edged a ball straight into her nose!

There was blood everywhere but little sympathy from her family looking on as husband Andrew could only find some used tissue paper which he helped stick up her nostrils to staunch the flow of gore whilst son Sean offered a spare pair of socks he had in his kit bag to wipe away the red stuff on her shirt.

I’m glad to report, however, that apart from two lovely black eyes and a swollen hooter there was no lasting damage and Jackie is already looking forward to scoring runs again next season – but will she wear a helmet?

Next goal wins!


Bernie ArmstrongMark PowellWhen underdogs Hundleton and top side Merlins Bridge met in a Senior Cup tie the respective managers were Mark Powell and Bernie Armstrong, two of the most competitive footballers in Pembrokeshire in their heyday but still good pals . . .
If you wanted proof that a touch of good humour and genuine camaraderie still exist in local football then the end-of-season division one football match between Hundleton and Merlins Bridge would provide it.

Respective managers Mark Powell and Bernie Armstrong were real rivals in their playing days but always stayed good pals off it, as it should be in any sport.

At one stage, Bernie’s ‘Bridge Boys’ were 10-0 up and when they added an 11th goal ‘Powie’ raced across the pitch, to the amazement of the referee and players, and shouted to Bernie, “Why don’t we play next goal wins? Like we did as kids!”

Bernie, the ref and players almost collapsed with laughter but it was a good job that Mr Armstrong didn’t jokingly agree because Hundleton grabbed a late consolation goal to lose 11-1.

Nice try though ‘Powie’!


Was Russell nervous? You bet he was!

Russell MurrayFran JamesAnother top team at the time was Johnston AFC, who travelled to Stebonheath Park to take on the highly-fancied Morriston Olympic at Stebonheath Park, which was almost like a home fixture for The Olympic – but The Tigers made sure that they were even better supported and their cheering, led by Fran James, certainly helped Russell Murray’s team battle their way to the final . . .
Johnston AFC played brilliantly to earn a place in the West Wales Cup Final as they beat Morriston Olympic at Stebonheath Park, Llanelli.

The Tigers support was boosted by a huge number of family members, including lots of wives/girlfriends and children, all bedecked with orange tops and their home-made orange and black rosettes, many of them made by Fran James, the long-suffering better half of club stalwart Richard ‘Jammer’ James.

The Tigers’ players did well to hide their understandable nerves but manager Russell Murray hinted that he might have a few nerves on board when he was asked by yours truly about having a team picture taken before kick-off.

As usual, Russell, being the gentleman that he was, happily agreed but showed his thoughts weren’t quite on the question.

“Shall we have it just before we come out to start?” he asked – and this long-suffering amateur photographer reminded him that they would still be in the changing room at that time so how could he take his pic?

Both had a chuckle but it was Mr Murray who had the last laugh when his team won on penalties and the same camera man wanted a post-match picture of the team celebrating – and got it straight away!

And well done to the Johnston WAGS who made so much noise and drowned out the opposition – and thanks Fran for all three rosettes, which I wore on pain of torture if I didn’t!