Shane Williams’ All Stars 9 Cwmaman Select XI 4
A large crowd turned out to support Paul Pugh recently as spectators and players alike enjoyed an entertaining afternoon at Grenig Park, Glanaman.
Paul kicked off the match with a pass to Shane, who sped off on the first of many trademark dizzying runs down the left wing.
His cross was met by former Wales teammate Nathan Brew whose effort was well saved by Cwm Keeper Keith ‘Beefy’ Powell.
Cwmaman Select XI faired well in the opening exchanges with Luke Rice, Graham ‘Bev’ Bevan and Grant Rees doing well.
Midway through the first half, Shane’s All Stars deservedly took the lead when a fine move saw Craig ‘The Call Centre’ Spring and ex Scarlets, Wales and British Lion Dafydd Jones link up well to send Wales and Scarlets rising star Rhodri Williams through to score a great goal.
Cwmaman hit back with a goal of their own through Liam Soroka. On 30 minutes a powerful run by last year’s ‘Big Brother’ winner Sam Evans ended with a thunderous 35-yard shot that almost broke the net to give Shane’s team a slender lead.
Directly from the re-start a seemingly fair challenge from Shane on his opposition number saw ref Wayne Neal pulling out his little black book and summoning over the former IRB World Player of The Year. Rather than producing a yellow card, Mr Neal asked for an autograph.
On the stroke of half-time, Shane dribbled past three Cwmaman defenders before rifling a left foot rocket into the bottom corner of the net to give his side a deserved 3-1 interval lead.
The second half continued as the first ended with both teams playing open attacking football.
Cwm struck first when, following a foul in the box, Soroka slammed home the penalty to claim his second goal of the game.
The introduction of Chris Rees, Jamie Morgan and Mark James early in the second half gave Shane’s team fresh impetus and James showed his talents with a quick-fire hat-trick during a 25-min purple patch to put Shane’s team into a commanding 6-2 lead.
Cwmaman followed suit and brought on the experienced Jeff Matthews and Eirian Rees. And it was Rees who reduced the deficit with two goals in quick succession and almost completed his hat-trick only to be denied by the post.
Shane’s All Stars made the game safe with further goals from Sam Lewis, the busy Lindsay Stamp and Shane.
Paul Pugh presented the Paul Pugh Cup to the delighted Shane Williams at Clwb Godre’r Mynydd Du before a buffet, raffle and auction of sporting memorabilia.
A special thank you to Alun Rees, Jeff and Brieg Matthews who worked tirelessly to make the day a great success and Sarah Thomas, whose creative skills were utilised to the full with her wonderful face-paint creations.
The organisers would also want to thank match ball sponsor Rice Heating and Plumbing and everyone who supported the event to make it such a successful and enjoyable day.