Saturday 12th March 2022 ko 14:30
Gwent Premier League- Premier Division
YNYSDDU WELFARE 2 (Bowen 66 90)
Bowen penalty saved 44
A Davies sent off 90 (2nd booking)
LLISWERRY 4 (Cooke 31 37 70 Sully 90)
Cooke penalty saved 60
Att c50 at Blackwood Comprehensive School
Its fair too say Ynysddu and I do go back a fair way. My first game involved with GroundhopUK was the then Ynysddu Crusaders’ hop game at 9 Mile Point in 2009, and then in 2018 I was at what could have been their final ever game at Pontllanfraith Leisure Centre. When the Leisure Centre was saved, I tried to get them to host on the 2019 Welsh Hop there, but just about everyone got let down by PILCS, unless of course you were involved at Ewenny Rangers!
They’re one of a few clubs I always look out for so when this game popped up, and I was based in Bristol for the weekend, it was an easy decision to head back to Gwent. In a sense this was Ynysddu’s third choice of ground. Nine Mile Point was being used by the rugby club and the council was repairing the 3G pitch at Pontllanfraith.
So the club hired a convenient pitch with more than a hint of irony involved as one of the reasons Caerphilly Borough Council had given to try to close Pontllanfraith was that the pitch had already moved…. to Blackwood Comprehensive School! I’d argue in terms of facilities the area ended up getting the best of both worlds, but as a groundhopper you had a choice.
You could either see it as a possibly unique chance to watch a game at a ground that at hitherto only been used for friendlies, or you could see it as a game in the kind of 3G cage you can see in no end of places. I suppose I’m just a “Glass half-full” kind of a bloke…..
The game attracted quite a few groundhoppers, some also attracted by the fact Ynysddu are regular programme producers, in fat on this occasion they also had club badges too- with both the current crest and the former Crusaders design available.
We were treated to a good game too, with Lliswerry’s Dale Cooke’s hat trick being ultimately the difference between the two sides. It was close though, with the visitors’ winner being of the Ice Hockey “empty net” style with the home keeper up to a corner only to chase back vainly as Lliswerry successfully counterattacked.
I’m not sure whether Ynysddu are planning any more games here; its not common for a club to have, let alone use a 3rd choice ground after all!