Cymru Alliance (Welsh Step two North)
Rhydymwyn 5 Penrhyncoch 1 HT: 0-0 Att: 38
Pugh 55, 65 Ralph 66, Drazdauskas 68, 89 : Pen 85, missed pen 87
from Dolfechlas Road (pictures)
Another jaunt into Wales, with both my lads in tow, stopping off halfway for a picnic at Beeston Castle, which is well worth it, by the way. From the summit of the castle you have a panorama of cheshire, all the way up to Ellesmere Port. Rhydymwyn is another tiny dot on the map that boasts a second division football club. Founded in 1911, they were promoted from the Wrexham based National League last season. This is not their first taste of football at this level though, having actually won the league in 1997/98. Various reasons though prevented the club from being promoted to the League of Wales. Since that time they have made various improvements to the ground.
Tempting as it is to pronounce the town Ri-dim-win, it is pronounced more lile Riddy-Moo-In. The name in Welsh means Ford of the Ore referring to the ford over the River Alyn, which in recent years has burst its banks and flooded many properties. It used to be a district of Mold but is now a parish in its own right. It is however a very small place still, just outside the pleasant town of Mold. The ground, known both as Vicarage Road (like Watford) and Dolfechlas Road, is clearly visible from the main Denbigh Road, the A541.
Parking is behind one goal and round the back of the white pavillion. The crowd was minute even by Cymru Alliance standards. I counted at most 38. Understandable I guess due to the size of the place but disappointing to see such low crowds at this level of football in Wales. Makes you wonder how on earth teams like Rhydymwyn stay afloat. It’s a very friendly club though. They gave us a football before kick off to play with, on a patch of grass round the back of the pitch. They also let the kids on at half time to shoot some balls into a real football goal, which went down very well with my two.
Just one stand adorns the perimeter of the ground, by the side of the gleaming white clubhouse. Blue corrugated roof and sides held up by rusting steel posts, and fronted by cratered advertising boards and a rickety sign, holds around 100 seats in just two rows.
Since promotion Rhydymwyn had struggled, losing their opening match 5-0 at home to unfancied Ruthin Town. This was followed by two 5-2 defeats before getting their first win, 3-2, last weekend against fellow newcomers Rhayader Town. In contrast Penrhyncoch, themselves another small dot on a map, just outside Aberystwyth, had got off to an unexpectedly bright start and were lying in third. All the stats pointed towards an away win. This was further exacerbated by Riddy only being able to gather togther 12 players and Ouzlem pulling up injured after one minute. This division often turns up a surprise score and today was one of them. Penrhyncoch looked very heavy legged throughout, and a lot of their players looked unfit, as they held their hosts to a lacklustre goalless first half. The second half sprang into life on 55 when Pugh opened the scoring after Penrhyncoch’s defence was split open. Then followed a purple patch for the home side as Pugh scored a similar goal 10 minutes later. Then he split the defence open with a pass to Ralph a minute later who made it 3-0. Two minutes after that another incisive through ball put Drazdauskas free, who rounded the keeper to make it 4-0. The club lying in third were decimated in 13 second half minutes.
The string of through balls and goals dried up for a spell, until a shellshocked Penrhyncoch got one back on 85. They then got a penalty shortly afterwards; the ball hit the post and was smashed in on the rebound by the taker. No goal according to the rules of football. The taker can’t score from the rebound unless it hits another player – good decision by the ref.
Drazdauskas scored another at the end to restore their four goal advantage. An amazing win considering the odds were against them and they were reliant on only 11 players from the first minute. It was great second half.