Cons, Constitutional Club, Cwmaman Institute, FC Cwmaman, Football, groundhoppers, groundhopping, Penrhiwceiber, Pentwyn Field, South Wales Alliance, Wales
Sunday 27th August 2017 ko 11.00
South Wales Alliance Division One
PENRHIWCEIBER CONSITUTIONAL ATHLETIC 0
FC CWMAMAN 2 (Jenkins 41 49)
It’s not often you see a bloke with a little table and a box of programmes and know all is well with the world. I’m well used to helping to organise these events, and ending up taking a coachload of hoppers to places I’ve visited before, I see it as trying to put something back into a sport which has given me a lot over the years. I’d visited here two years ago, and rather fallen in love with the place. So seeing David Matthews there with that table gave me that lovely feeling that I’d repaid a favour.
The club play in the Pentwyn Field, with Tyntetown in the background, on the site of the former Penrikyber Colliery on by reputation the biggest pitch in South Wales. It used to be a rugby pitch, and the goals are 130 yards apart, clearly the in-goal areas were included! Those with a good knowledge of South Wales football will spot Glasbrook Terrace, home of Welsh League outfit Penrhiwceiber FC just beyond the Cons’ changing room block.
The intriguing part of the Pentwyn Field is the pitch that’s far closer to the changing rooms. As first you’d think that both the Cons and Tynte FC who share here would be far better off using that pitch. It turns out that if the main pitch is too big, then this pitch is too small, so only gets used for reserve and youth games. It does seem a shame, though because as it stands the facility is almost impossible to enclose, making progression to the Welsh League impossible.
This was a game between teams with altered identities. Until recently Cwmaman were known as Cwmaman Institute and ended a stint in the Welsh League 3 years ago. They’ve now ended their association with thew Miners’ Institute and changed their name accordingly. Those with longer memories may remember the hosts as Osborne Athletic, they featured on the 2005 Welsh Hop in a South Wales Amateur League tie at Rhydefelin. Since then the team has had a spell down in the Rhondda League, before being promoted back but into the Senior League. When the Osborne Hotel in town closed, the club changed its name and base to the Constitutional Club. If nothing else it does give a better idea of the club’s location!
This was probably the one game on the hop where we saw sizable local support, which is why the game saw the highest attendance of the weekend. There was a contingent from Cwmaman who made a lively presence, even if they got the colour of their smoke bombs wrong!!
In the end the visitors won, mainly due to Nathan Jenkins’ sharpness in front of goal, but I trust the Cons made a tidy sum hosting a bumper crowd. I strolled back to the coach with Dave, he was still eager to please, but the truth was that he and his club had put on an amazing show for the throng.
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