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THE HERALD FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 9 2016


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15 year old Helen Evans scores a debut goal for Aber! Credit: Chris Howells


77 Sport


Evans is league’s youngest scorer General Manager appointed to lead North Wales Sion Jones: Newly appointed as General Manager


Aberystwyth Town Ladies Cyncoed Ladies


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ABERYSTWYTH Town Ladies


opened their Women’s Welsh Premier League campaign with a hard earned point at their home venue at Cae Baker, Penrhyncoch, until the new 3G facility is up and running. Aber started brightly and put the


Cyncoed goal under pressure from the start as both Ffion Wyn Roberts and young Helen Evans gave the Coed rear guard a real test in the opening quarter. Cyncoed, however, began to get


into the game, with Athina Vernava a real threat with her pace and direct running and Aber had to be alert on a few occasions. Prompted by some big tackles in


mid field by Amy Jenkins and Kelly Thomas, Aber took the lead in the 30th minute when after good work by Roberts, 15-year-old Helen Evans on her debut scored at the far post to send the team into wild celebrations. Helen is the youngest ever scorer in the Women’s Welsh Premier League. After the goal, Cyncoed began to take control, with Casey Thomas and


Jo Hodge prominent for the visitors and Aber had to dig deep to keep the score 1-0 until the half time whistle as some resolute defending by Sian Evans and Josey Pugh ensured that Aber went in with the lead intact. The second half started again with


Cyncoed pressing but with Aber holding firm and young keeper Kate Christopher doing really well on a couple of occasions to keep Aber in front and producing a breathtaking save on 60 minutes from Fern Burrage. However, Cyncoed equalised from


the corner when Sian Evans unfortunately diverted the ball into her own net. Aber were now up against a Cyncoed


team going for the three points. Despite losing Evans to an injury, who was replaced by Rhiannon Towns, the Aber midfield of Jenkins, Thomas, and Becca Williams ably assisted by Captain Ffiona Evans and young Helen Evans held firm to gain a valuable point. Yoing Mard Jones and Nia Witts played their part in what was an enjoyable encounter. Aber travel to Abergavenny next


Sunday (Sept 10) in what will be a difficult encounter as they beat a much fancied Swansea City team 5-4.


Flying start for Aberaeron


Division Three West C Aberaeron


Pantyffynnon Rees duly added the conversion


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IT may be a little optimistic to


suggest that Aberaeron could be on the up after last season’s trauma and relegation, but life in Division 3 C West could not have started better with a bonus point success against Pantyffynnon. With new coach Justin Lloyd at


the helm, there were distinct signs of optimism, albeit that the all-important bonus point was not secured until the last minute. The league is a little of an


unknown quantity, so all the more important to take every opportunity when it arises, as there are likely to be some more challenges ahead. From the first whistle Aberaeron’s


forward power was evident and they were soon rewarded with a well struck penalty by Steffan Rees. The only surprise was that


it took midway into the opening period for the first try as the hosts were somewhat guilty of passing up several opportunities, but the giant Gethin Hughes eventually broke the dour defence to cross for the score.


and he was soon back in action to convert the second score which was the result of an excellent break by centre Ollie Sawyer, scything through the visitors defence from midway. The second half was very much a


repeat of the first period as the visitors defence held firm, and it was they that shocked the home contingent with a break from their own line, taking advantage of a breakdown in attack to register the score through Scott Swinsford. The pressure from the home eight


however finally bore fruit and Aaron Lewis crowned a fine performance with a storming break to extend the lead.


As the clock ticked down the


introduction of Tudur Jenkins and Kieron Etheridge proved to be a masterstroke as both made inroads which in the end provided the opportunity for the all-important 4th try, gained near the line by scrum half Dyfrig Davies. So with the points in the bag,


there were welcome smiles as they trooped off the field, but with the knowledge there are far sterner challenges ahead.


BUSINESS leader Sion Jones has


been appointed as General Manager of the North Wales Development Region. Jones, who has successfully led


marketing businesses in South and North Wales and worked in the sector across the UK, Europe, North America and the Middle East, will take up the post at the Parc Eirias home of newly promoted Principality Premiership side RGC 1404 next month, with a clear mandate to strategically drive the young rugby region forwards, on and particularly, off the field. Sion was previously Managing


Director of Golley Slater, based in Cardiff and earlier in his career worked for McCann Ericsson, one of the world’s leading marketing agencies to further establish his credentials. He will leave his current post as Marketing and Business Director at a North Wales-based international marketing communications agency at the end of the month. WRU Group Chief Executive


Martyn Phillips said: “The strategic purpose of the North Wales Development Region is to define North Wales and unite its communities, and the vision, in line with the Welsh Rugby Union strategy, is for more people to be involved with rugby, more often, with more enjoyment and success.


“The North Wales Development


Region has already made huge strides in the last five years, RGC gaining two promotions in the last three years, building a strong supporter base and participation on the rise throughout the region’s clubs and schools. “However, with more than one


million people in North Wales, there is still scope to build on that and increase those opportunities further. We are confident Sion will drive forward that strategy in conjunction with the WRU Executive Board and the clubs and staff in North Wales.” Sion, who hails from North Wales


and is a dedicated coach of Dinbych Under 14s, the club his father David Wyn Jones and uncle Pete Minshull helped to found 40 years ago, is enthusiastic about his remit. He said: “I want to build on the


successes of the last few years on the field, and off it by engaging further with the community and the network of clubs. “I hope I can bring a commercial


and marketing edge, not just to RGC, but across the Development Region. “I will be supporting Mark Jones


and his team to ensure they can achieve the best possible rugby results for the region while developing North Wales players, and we also need to cascade the brand of rugby RGC is now


respected for into the clubs so that we get more talent coming into the age grade sides and academy to build for the future. “With Premiership rugby coming


to North Wales, our job is to reach out to our supporters, and engage more potential supporters in what North Wales experience has to offer. “Having met some of the staff this


morning, they are full of ideas about what is needed which is a fantastic place to start. I really can’t wait to meet them again to understand more about what has been done already and how I can support them going forward. “Being fully involved in a North


Wales rugby club, I have a good idea of where we are and I’ve also been lucky to work closely with the WRU in the past on marketing and branding campaigns.” WRU Head of Operations, Julie


Paterson, said: “Sion is a fantastic appointment to take the North Wales Development Region onto the next level, particularly with his business, commercial and marketing background and expertise, along with his first-hand experience and understanding of North Wales rugby. In conjunction with myself, Geraint John and Ryan Jones, Sion is perfectly placed to implement and deliver the Strategic Plan for North Wales agreed by the WRU Board.”


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