Monday 29th August 2016 ko 11.00
South Wales Alliance Division 2
CARDIFF HIBERNIAN 2 (Harris-Reffel 5 Inyang 53)
CARDIFF AIRPORT 4 (Davies 1 Martyn 25 67 Hall 79)
The final day of the hop saw a change of environ as we headed for Cardiff, and for our first game the suburb of Ely. The area has something of a troubled reputation, the area around the North Ely Rec’ saw bread riots here in 1993, but the groundhop has visited no end of supposedly problem areas and found nothing more than a warm welcome, and so it was to be here.
I say warm, and I mean warm, it was a glorious day and I did regret bringing a jumper and not sun tan lotion! But whatever the weather the curried goat on sale was always likely to be a good seller, in fact so good, I missed out altogether!
The club takes its name from the Scottish Hibernian Regiment that formed the club in 1963 and while I expected a cosmopolitan feel to the club I didn’t expect that to extend to the pitchside hoardings!
It transpired that the club had acquired from Cardiff City the boards that slotted into the “Next Game” notice at Ninian Park. At a loss of what to do with them they decided to attach them pitchside! They made a small windfall when some of the hoppers spotted their own clubs’ names and made an offer!
With 8 games gone there were many tired legs so it was a pleasure to sit on the grass bank and watch an engrossing game. That was in no small part to two-thirds of team from the Welsh Groundhop’s past in the South Wales Amateur League. Then the refereeing team was Peter Small, his daughter Paula Small and her boyfriend Wayne Tregonning. Sadly Paula no longer officiates but Clive Layne proved a more than adequate replacement, and just like back then the team covered the day’s games, with each taking the whistle for one game.
It was Clive’s turn this time, and he managed a sometime’s feisty encounter easily. Either side could have won, in the end the visitors did, but everyone enjoyed their stay in Ely. So much so in fact, it impacted on our next game….