Sunday, 16 April 2017

CEFN DRUIDS SECURE WELSH PREMIER STATUS

CEFN DRUIDS 3 V LLANDUDNO 2
WELSH PREMIER LEAGUE @ THE ROCK
14 APRIL 2017 --- 2.30PM
CEFN DRUIDS IN ACTION AT THE ROCK
This highly entertaining 5 goal thriller saw Druids come out on the right side of the goals and the three points added to their WPL League Licence already gained secured their berth in the top league in Wales for the 2017/18 season.
This I believe would be my hat trick of Welsh games for the season a poor return for a lover of the Welsh league scene but today would prove a friendly and entertaining day including in it a visit to a new ground in The Rock.  Start was from base station just before 9.30 and with Bank Holiday's upon us this Good Friday would already feel like a Saturday as we entered the process of not having a clue what day it really was.  First change was made at Stockport were we decided, being on time, to make the all stoppping Chester train after a brief comfort stop we were soon standing for the first time as we headed for Wales.  The Holyhead to Lllanelli Arrive train service, now there's a journey and a half, was pretty rammed at arrival and departure.  As ever though this brought its benefits when our 20 minute journey to Ruabon station saw us meet a couple of Wrexham fans from Colwyn Bay and we had the chance to talk about the Racecourse Ground or Glyndwr University Stadium or whatever title it parades under at present.  Anyway superb old ground with a lovely new curved stand and a club crying out for a return to league footy good to meet you guys keep the belief in your club.
THE  PONTCYSYLLTE AQUEDUCT
Having said farewell we remained on the train for a further 5 minutes and departure at Ruabon had seen us make a pact that if there was a taxi in we would take a look at the nearby Pontcysyllte Aqueduct the longest in the UK.  Sadly of course there wasn't one and as per any public transport timing the bus to the ground was at 1240 with the train timed to arrive at 1241, you really couldn't make it up could you ?  Except somebody did.
Our walk to Cefn Mawr took us along the busy B5605 and with the adjacent railway line following us it would have been great to have seen the old Cefn Mawr station still in use.  Through Rhosmedyre we took the option of turning in towards the village on Plas Kynaston Lane the site of the clubs former ground which is now adorned with a lovely 'T's' which seems to have waved bye bye to the mutual shop in the village.
THE IMPRESSIVE VIADUCT ON THE WREXHAM TO SHREWSBURY LINE
As we climbed to the main[?] commercial area a quick turn back gave us the view we wanted in the distance of the aqueduct beginning with 'p' and to the left the stunning viaduct which takes the Wrexham to Shrewsbury railway line.  The village has I'm sure suffered from the arrival of a big supermarket with many of the local shops appearing to have gone and going down the niche market.  Many of the villages/towns in North Wales seem to have a similar feel to them and although the overall feel is fine there is an underlying thought that you have never quite found the place and somebody as put it away in a box to be brought out again when you have left.
FIRST VIEW OF THE ROCK
So with time pressing for the 2.30pm kick the short walk to The Rock was undertaken and after a steep rise towards the car park and turnstile we were greeted with a warm welcome by the lady at the turnstile and as Mick fumbled about with his change I was eager to take a look at The Rock with its disused quarry face.
Immediately to your left is the clubhouse, changing rooms and snack bar followed afterwards by the toilet block and smart stand.  The remainder of the ground is hard standing with wooden fence to the rear except for the feature the rock face opposite the main stand from the former quarry this side also has the dugouts which are split by the double decked TV gantry.  I guess you could say the ground would be and is a standard basic new ground but the siting of it with this back drop gives it a special feel. Mick had got into conversation with quite a few people including steward Kelvin who was from Derby!  Interestingly the chap knew a lot about the club and had a commitment to following his team and was a good representative of all things Ancienst to us.
THE MAIN STAND
Today proved to be a non fish and chip shop day, couldn't find one in Cefn and although we managed a chip cob from the 'hatch' it wasn't the best advertised.  Mick then saw burgers coming out and a pie, having lost him I fund him through the camera lens polishing off an additional pie!  It was a shame the club didn't show a menu board as a visitor I wasn't sure they had some of these things on offer and just plumped for a small chip cob and coffee.
Cefn Druids have a rich history oldest club in Wales and you know this blog I wont go back through loads of history except to say they are now in a very nice place with a steady ground and a nice set of officials who all seemed very friendly.  The latter is always welcome when you have made a long journey and does the club credit with a good public address system getting us towards kick off there was time to catch up with a few more visitors including some Llandudno fans.  Also in attendance today were Mardon College old and new from Exeter Uni who made for a good atmosphere on their annual visit to the club.
SAM HART FREE KICK FOR LLANDUDNO
So to the action and it was Cefn who took the lead after 11 minutes Ashley Ruane weaved his way into the box and his shot was parried by Dave Roberts but it fell to Michael Pritchard who slotted the ball home.
MICHAEL PRITCHARD [10] CELEBRATES HIS OPENER
Llandudno were soon level when a close range overhead kick flew back off the bar and after a mini scramble Lee Thomas finished even with the attempted Cefn clearance crashing the ball back off the underside of the bar and into the goal.  Just shy of the half hour mark Cefn Druids went back into the lead when Pritchard got his second at the near post with a sharp finish.
MIKE WILLIAMS CLEARS FOR LLANDUDNO
The second half started in good spirit with Roberts saving from Joshua Jones before the visiting number 1 was on hand again to save from Ellis Healing.  Llandudno were not giving this game up and if anything were becoming more dominant home keeper Michael Jones had to be alert to save from Danny Hughes.
With 8 minutes to go Ruane pulled one out of the top drawer for a goal of the season contender when wide on the right he screamed one over Roberts onto the far left hand corner of the goal to make it 3-1.
As Cefn started to consider their safety back came Llandudno to give them a few final moments of doubt when on 90 minutes it became 3-2 when Marc Williams headed home at the back post.
Probably the best game of 2017 for the blog although that is not been set by very high standards for me this year, this though was a thoroughly enjoyable game in a ground that I also found interesting.  I guess Huw Griffiths Cefn's manager would be very pleased with his side who performed well but there was certainly plenty for Alan Morgan his opposite number to take heart from.
HUW GRIFFITHS HAPPY CEFN DRUIDS MANAGER AFTER 90 MINUTES
The return journey was mapped out to take a bus journey to the station at Ruabon but with no timetable in the bust stand and a look a confidence in the previously found information we opted for the walk back and caught the train with a few minutes to spare.  The return journey saw us meet up with and console our Wrexham pals who had seen their side lose 3-1 to Maidstone and at this point we also met one of their mates who travels from Darlington to see the Robins.  we sadly did not have long enough to chat to these guys as we were all soon departing at Chester but it was a pleasure to catch up with you, thanks for the chat!
LLANDUDNO MANAGER ALAN MORGAN
Journey back to Stockport was uneventful and with a quick visit to the big 'M's' we were soon departing the famous platform '0' at Stockport and arriving back at base station just short of 8pm.
Overall a very enjoyable day with a recommended visit to Cefn Druids next time I'd probably go an hour earlier to spend a little more time in the area.

1 comment:

  1. Walked and barged over THE PONTCYSYLLTE AQUEDUCT when staying at Llangollen so it was nice to see a picture of the aqueduct. Brill blog mate and pictures and love the rock face at the back.

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