NEATH RFC FUN BUS – CROSS KEYS – SATURDAY 16th November 2019

Let’s take a lot of support to CROSS KEYS and back the boys!

Supporters bus to CROSS KEYS on SATURDAY 16th November 2019 – leaving Clubhouse at 12:30pm for the 2:30pm Kickoff, returning from Cross Keys an hour after the game.

To book YOUR seat on the “FUN BUS” contact Mark Davies on mark_davies715@hotmail.com via Facebook & Twitter or ➡️ The new telephone number: 07496308147

NEATH RFC REMEMBERS

As the country pauses to remember and honour its war heroes, it is appropriate to recall Neath’s rugby fallen.

First World War

Private CHARLES MORRIS from Melyn played at half-back for Neath and served in the South African war. He joined the Royal Welsh Fusiliers and died on December 12, 1914, aged 34.

2nd Engineer LEWIS JENKINS from Skewen played for Neath at outside-half between 1900 and 1905. He later joined Swansea. He was lost when the “Tangistan” was sunk in March 1915.

Cpl. TOMMY JONES was an outside-half who worked at Main Colliery, Bryncoch. He served in the Boer War and was lost in the Gallipoli campaign and his death on August 8, 2015 is recorded on the Helles Memorial.
Capt. R.G.S. (Reg) BROWNING was a Neath 2nd XV forward who met his death serving with the Welsh Regiment at Loos on October 2, 2015.

King’s Serjeant JOE DAVIES D.C.M. of the Rifle Brigade was a collier in Seven Sisters and he also played for Resolven at forward. He won the French Military Cross and the D.C.M. in August 1915 for bringing in the wounded but was killed in action in France in February 1916.

Captain C.L.S. BRANFILL – Capel Lisle Aylett Branfill of the Glamorgan Yeomanry died of pneumonia in Cairo on May 11, 1916. Home for Christmas in 1910, the Old Harrovian played once on the wing for Neath against Llwynypia after assisting London Irish against Neath the day before. His grandfather J.B. Branfill was one of Neath’s earliest players in the 1870’s. The family home was in Clydach and he sometimes played for Pontardawe during holidays.

Private ROSSER D. ROSSER did not play for Neath but was secretary of the Neath Thursdays and so played a part in the development of several All Blacks. He served in the King;s Own Shropshire Light Infantry and was killed at on the Somme on July 14, 1916 and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial.

Sapper BILL BEYNON of Skewen who played a handful of games on the wing in 1903 was killed on November 18, 1916. He was aged 36 and was serving with the Royal Engineers.

Sgt. Major TOMMY OWEN was a diminutive wing who hailed from nearby Resolven. He won a place in the Neath team in 1911/12 when he became a regular try-scorer and he featured for the next two seasons often alongside former Resolven team-mates Dai Parry, Edgar Thomas and Reg Stroud. When war was declared, he enlisted in the 9th Battalion of the Welch Regiment and rapidly earned promotion to the rank of sergeant-major where he displayed all the leadership qualities expected of a Neath player. He was killed on June 7, 1917 at the age of 24. When rugby resumed after the War in February, 1919, Owen’s pre-war skipper Fred David took a Neath XV to play Resolven in a memorial match for Tommy Owen which served as a fund-raiser for his family.

Private T.O. JONES was a Neath and Glamorgan County winger who went north to Oldham R.L. In December 1913. Originally from Treorchy, he lost his life on September 20, 1917, aged 30.

Cpl. TREVOR BENSON was a wing who joined Neath from Swansea and played 10 games in 1902/03. He had been in German East and West Africa for 13 years but returned home and enlisted in the Middlesex Regiment and was killed by a bomb dropped from an aeroplane on September 27, 1917, aged 37.

Sergeant DICK HUGHES D.C.M. of the Somerset Light Infantry, a long-time All Blacks supporter, was killed at Cambrai on November 30, 1917. He was the first Neath man to win the D.C.M. for “sniping the sniper” when he shot a German who had taken a heavy toll on his comrades.

Lt. JAMES MORRIS of the Glamorgan Yeomanry was an occasional wing three-quarter who was on attachment to the Welsh Regiment when he died in Palestine on December 27, 1917. Jim Morris was rugby captain at Neath County School and scored a try on his Neath debut against Glynneath on September 6, 1913.

2nd Lt. JACK GRIFFITHS was a full back who appeared for Neath in 1913/14. He played most of his rugby for Neath YMCA and was a prominent playing member of Neath Cricket Club too. He was killed in action on May 2, 1918.

Capt. Adj. TOM POWELL was a Neath forward of the 1890’s who went on to serve in the Boer War. In the Kaiser War, he initially served with the Oxford & Bucks. Light Infantry but had been promoted Captain-Adjutant in the Royal Irish Regiment. After being wounded in France, he was hospitalised in Dublin and died on July 1, 1918 and is buried in Grangegorman Military Cemetery, Dublin.

2nd Lt. GWILYM JONES was a three-quarter in the Neath championship-winning teams of 1909/10 when he scored 9 tries and 1910/11. He also played for Pontypridd, Cardiff, London Welsh and represented Glamorgan County alongside Neath forward T.C. Lloyd against the 1908 Australians. A schoolmaster, he was reported killed in action on September 11, 1918.
Sgt. DAVID DAVIES joined Neath from Morriston in 1901/02 and scored 14 tries from the wing in 26 appearances before departing for a teaching post at Mountain Ash where he also played. He died of wounds in September,1918, aged 36.

Private WILLIAM JARRETT of Cimla, aged 40, had played at forward for the 2nd XV which reached the final of the South Wales Challenge Cup in 1901/02. He won the Military Medal at the Battle of Amiens in August, 1918 but was wounded and repatriated but he died of his wounds on October 29, 1918 and is buried in Llantwit Cemetery, Neath.

2nd Lt. FRED PERRETT was an outstanding forward who joined Neath in September 1912 after impressing briefly for Briton Ferry. His talents earned him instant recognition as, after just a handful of games for Neath, he was catapulted into the Welsh XV that lost 3-6 to South Africa on December 14th and three days later faced the tourists again as a member of the Neath team that ran the tourists close before losing 3-8 at The Gnoll. After playing in all four of Wales’ internationals that season, he went north to Leeds and later joined Hull. Promoted to the rank of 2nd Lieutenant in the Royal Welch Fusiliers, he was injured in one of the last battles of the conflict. He died of his wounds, aged 27, in France on December 1, 1918 – twenty days after the guns fell silent.

Second World War

D.M. (DAVID MORGAN) EVANS was a mobile, versatile forward who joined Neath from Glynneath. He soon established himself as a key member of the immensely strong Neath packs of the 1930’s and figured in the championship side of 1933/34. He played in a Welsh trial but, disappointed at being overlooked for his cap, took the well-trodden path north and joined Huddersfield R.L. During the Hitler war, Evans joined the Royal Navy as a stoker and was lost when HMS Hood was sunk on 24th May, 1941.

Another player who appeared occasionally for Neath before the war was CRAD DAVIES who was a centre from Cwmgwrach. He served in the Welch Regiment and died aged 29 and is buried in Munster, Germany.

Supporters should remember these heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice.
If anybody is aware of any other Neath players who gave their lives in the conflicts and whose names should be included in this tribute, please contact me via the Club.

Mike Price

RESULT: NEATH 34 CROSS KEYS 25 – SATURDAY, 9th NOVEMBER, 2019

MATCH REPORT TO FOLLOW …

MATCH PREVIEW

Neath host Cross Keys at The Gnoll on Saturday (kick off – 2.30pm) with a place in the last eight of the WRU National Cup at stake.

Scrum-half Nicky Griffiths takes over the captaincy as regular skipper Aaron Bramwell is in Bermuda, Jordan Rees reverting to full back. Winger Sion Summers and centre Jarrad Rees reinforce the three-quarter line while Dan Guarneri takes over at outside-half after making his 50th appearance last time out.

In the pack, Jake Lewis gets the nod at hooker and regular lock Rhys Morgan is sidelined by a hamstring strain but Neath are fortunate in having the experienced Leon Ward to cover and provide the grunt. Ben Lukes joins the back-row with Tomi Antozzi fit again to claim a bench spot.

Neath v Cross Keys (Home) 2.30pm
15 Jordan Rees; 14 Sion Summers, 13 Jarrad Rees, 12 Matthew Pearce, 11 James Roberts; 10 Dan Guarneri, 9 Nicky Griffiths (captain); 1 Ifan James, 2 Jake Lewis, 3 Liam Tobias; 4 Leon Ward, 5 Jon Barley; 6 Jacob Blackmore, 8 David Griggs, 7 Ben Lukes
Replacements: 16 Gareth Lloyd, 17 Iestyn Jones, 18 Steffan Jones, 19 Tomi Antozzi, 20 Jon Hill, 21 Macauley Griffiths, 22 Callum Hall, 23 Ben Atkins

ADMISSION – As it is a Welsh Cup match, season tickets are not valid but good news for supporters of both teams is that admission is at the special price of £5 with Under-16’s, as usual, free. Entry only via turnstiles at the Town End.

HOSPITALITY NEWS: NEATH v CROSS KEYS – (Saturday 9th November 2019)

Neath RFC hospitality will continue on Saturday 9th November for the CROSS KEYS National Cup fixture at the Gnoll.

The pre-match hospitality will start from 12:30pm comprising of a two course meal.

This is a great opportunity to try the Neath RFC hospitality experience which will be in place for every home league game. Recent hospitality events have been very successful and arrangements are being made to ensure that this experience continues for all home games.

SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKER:  Neil “Chalky” White

SPECIAL OFFER
Entry to hospitality is £12.00 which includes a Match Ticket.

Matchday hospitality is open to both Neath and CROSS KEYS supporters.

The on field action will then kick off at 2:30pm, as both NEATH and CROSS KEYS will be eager to get back in the swing of things following the recent break in fixtures due to bad weather and the Rugby World Cup.

It is expected that we will have a big take up for this SPECIAL OFFER so please book early by calling The Clubhouse on 01639 643328

MATCH POSTPONED: NEATH v GLAMORGAN WANDERERS (Away) SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26th, 2019 – KICK OFF 2.30pm

Neath visit Glamorgan Wanderers at the Memorial Ground, Ely for the first time in several seasons on Saturday (kick off – 2.30pm).

Experienced scrum-half Nicky Griffiths takes over the captaincy as regular skipper Aaron Bramwell is sidelined by the viral infection which afflicted him last week but Neath are boosted by the timely return of strong-running centre Matthew Pearce and outside-half Dan Guarneri.

In the pack, prop Ifan James joins hooker Jake Lewis in the front row while the experienced Jon Barley and Leon Ward return in a bid to restore some much-needed edge to the pack.

Neath v Glamorgan Wanderers (Away) 2.30pm
15 Jordan Rees; 14 Luke Griffiths, 13 Will Holley, 12 Matthew Pearce, 11 James Roberts; 10 Dan Guarneri, 9 Nicky Griffiths (captain); 1 Ifan James, 2 Jake Lewis, 3 Liam Tobias; 4 Rhys Morgan, 5 Jon Barley; 6 Jacob Blackmore, 8 David Griggs, 7 Leon Ward
Replacements : 16 Steffan Jones, 17 Iestyn Jones, 18 Ben Lukes, 19 Jon Hill, 20 Macauley Griffiths

NEATH V NEW ZEALAND: 30th ANNIVERSARY DINNER

Come and celebrate 30 years since one of the greatest games in our club’s rich history with some key members of the ‘class of ‘89’

3 course meal
Celebrity guest speakers
Smart casual dress code
20% off for season ticket holders

#PackTheGnoll

NEATH RFC FUN BUS – GLAMORGAN WANDERERS – SATURDAY 26th OCTOBER

Let’s take a lot of support to GLAMORGAN WANDERERS and back the boys!

Supporters bus to GLAMORGAN WANDERERS on SATURDAY October 26th 2019 – leaving Clubhouse at 12:00 noon for the 2:30pm Kickoff, returning from Cardiff an hour after the game.

To book YOUR seat on the “FUN BUS” contact Mark Davies on mark_davies715@hotmail.com via Facebook & Twitter or ➡️ The new telephone number: 07496308147