27th May 2018, 16:07
Grounds in Caerphilly and Swansea host rugby league for the first time
Rugby League opened its doors at two new grounds in South Wales this Sunday with Aneurin Park in Caerphilly and Mynydd Newydd Playing Fields in Swansea hosting rugby league matches for the first time.
Refreshments at Aber Valley
For the Caerphilly public park, normally a stage for Penrhos FC as well as cricket and bowls, it was the first time that rugby posts have ever been erected. It’s the new home of Aber Valley Wolves RLFC, the club having moved just down the valley from Senghenydd.
The pitch was marked up for rugby league and the stage was set for a triple header of matches against the Cwmbran-based Torfaen Tigers.
Aber Valley won each game, finished 34-32 at under 13 level, 34-12 at under 15 and 28-24 at under 17. Over 300 attended throughout the afternoon and the club even ran out of cups for the tea and coffee!
Club director Helen Treherne was delighted in how the afternoon turned out.
“We have a great facility here,” she said. “There are swings and slides for children to enjoy, we have food and drink on sale, and the grass bank and benches ensures every fan has an excellent view.
Penlan Wild Stallions huddle at half-time
“Caerphilly Council have been really good with us and we’re delighted that they’re helping us to stage rugby league in the county. We couldn’t have been happier with the opening day especially as we had three very competitive wins against good Torfaen sides."
Across South Wales in Swansea, at a ground which is used to staging Penlan RFC rugby union matches, an under 13 rugby league game between new club Penlan Wild Stallions and old hands Bridgend Blue Bulls took place.
Penlan lost 32-16 at Cardiff Blue Dragons last week and they learned another valuable lesson this time around as they lost 50-8 to a strong Bridgend Blue Bulls side.
Coach Matt Brooks said: “The weather wasn’t great so not so we didn’t have as many supporters as we could have done, but it was another good learning experience for us even though the score line was large. Bridgend are an experienced club and they had plenty of strong players. They’ll do well this year.
“We’re just running under 13s this year but we’re hoping for a senior side soon and already have players registered for that. We’ve received a great welcome by all involved and have had plenty early support in starting our new team. We are hopeful that we can develop as a club within rugby league, and promote the game within Swansea too.”