Last Call for Pendine | Siapiwch os Hoffech Ddod i Bentywyn!

Does dim llawer o amser i fynd nes un o uchelbwynitau tymor Cyffwrdd
There’s not much time left until one of the highlights of the Touch season

Durka Durka Ladies, Pendine 2012

Durka Durka Ladies, Pendine 2012

Bydd twrnamaint dynion a thwrnamaint menywod ar ddydd Sadwrn 24ain o Awst gyda thwrnamaint cymysg ar ddydd Sul 25ain. Os hoffech gofrestru tim, llenwch y daflen isod neu i gael rhagor o fanylion, cliciwch fan hyn.  Does dim llawer o lefydd ar ol!

Dyma’r un o uchelbwyntiau tymor Cyffwrdd.  Lot o sbort a sbri mewn lleoliad arbennig!

There will be the Men’s and Women’s divisions on Saturday 24th August with the Mixed tournament on Sunday 25th. If you would like to register a team, complete the form below or for more information, click here.  Hurry!  There’s not many spaces left!

Plenty of fun to be had in an absolutely fantastic location.

 

Fideo Uchelbwyntiau  Pentywyn | Pendine Highlights Video 2012

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Barcutiaid yn Barod | Red Kites Ready

The Red Kites regional team, representing west Wales, recently held a team building training day for squad members in preparation for the inaugural Wales Touch Nationals on the 6th & 7th April.

Barcutiaid Coch, Pentywyn | Red Kites in Pendine OEC

Members of the Barcutiaid Coch | Red Kites team enjoying the team-building at Pendine

Wales Touch Nationals Logo

Despite only coming together for their first session at the end of January, the team has made a lot of progress.  It is fair to say that this is an inexperienced squad – a large number of the team are either completely new to Touch or have only been playing for a relatively short time.  There is also a large contingent of young players with seven players still in school.

The fact that the region has had to recruit inexperienced players is one of the reasons that the Nationals are so important to the development of the game in Wales.  (See the ‘Historic Announcement for Touch’ post for more on this).

Taking One for the Team at Pendine

But what the team makes up for in lack of experience, they certainly make up for in enthusiasm and commitment.  All of the training sessions held at Parc y Scarlets’ training barn were well attended and the recent team-building day at Pendine Outdoors, saw a strong bond begin to form between the players which will stand them in good stead when the going gets tough during the Nationals, which are being held at Swansea University Sports Centre.

The instructors at Pendine did a great job of getting the group to work together on challenges such as the Spiders Web (pictured below) where each member of the team had to pass through the web without touching either the ropes or the trees – not as easy as it sounds!  There were plenty of other tasks too – one of the other  favourites was completing an assault course whilst transporting cups full of water, balancing a ball on a plate and carrying a bell which wasn’t allowed to ring!

Her 'The Spiders Web' Challenge

The ‘Spiders Web’ Challenge

The team then took to the field at local club Laugharne RFC to recap on some of the techniques that they have been working on over the last couple of months and were able to run a Men’s Open v Mixed Open game, lead by Wales MXO international and Carmarthenshire girl, Jade Phillips.

An Unknown Entity

The Barcutiaid will go into the Nationals as rank outsiders and with players almost completely unknown to the other regions.  The majority of the squad are not on the radar when it comes to national teams or Cardiff-based clubs such as Phoenix, Durkas or Raptors (Welsh clubs that compete in England’s top level National Touch Series).  The sport is very much in it’s infancy in west Wales (the first Touch league only arrived in 2010 in Llanelli) and so far the Llanelli league has only produced two players that have competed on the international stage (Barcutiaid Assistant Coaches, Jade Phillips and Christen Rees-Jones – unfortunately both injured for the Nationals).  However, this element of surprise may gave them an edge in games against the more experienced teams such as the Cyclones and Warriors who may be expecting a straight forward victory over the Kites.

The west Wales players have the opportunity to put down a marker at the 2013 Nationals.  This will be a chance to measure themselves against current international players and see if they have got what it takes to pull on the red vest in the future.

International Ambitions

Ymarfer Barcutiaid | Kites Training, Laugharne | Talacharn RFC

Kites MO take on the Kites MXO in a training game

Since it’s inception in 1991, Touch in Wales has been centred around Cardiff but this has been detrimental to the development of the game.  Is it realistic to expect a country in which only 2,000 people play Touch in two or three leagues to produce the 112 top-class players required to field seven international Touch teams?

Up until recently, around 5% of the people that play Touch in Wales, played for one of the international teams.  There was no regional structure and the overwhelming majority of Wales players came through the Cardiff system.  Compare that to the Wales national rugby teams where you have nearly 80,000 participants that eventually filter into the five national sides (Wales, Wales Women, Wales Sevens, Wales U20, Wales U18).  In other words, less than 0.2% of rugby players in Wales will play on the international stage.

In order to win Grand Slams and reach the final four of a World Cup, a large player base is required in which the most talented players are filtered from the club to the regional level and then on to international honours.  International sport is about the cream of the crop representing their country.  This years Wales Touch Nationals are the first step forward towards realising this goal.

The Nationals will ensure that the game becomes more widespread across Wales and whilst initially there may well be a discrepancy between the emerging regions and the Cardiff heartland, it is unlikely that this will be the case for long.  The Red Kites are a prime example of a group of players that may not have played Touch for a long period of time but are willing to put in the hard work and commitment needed to play at the regional and possibly international level.  Who knows, perhaps the Nationals will uncover some hidden gems for next years Euros.

The inaugural Wales Touch Association Nationals are being held at Swansea University Sports Centre on Saturday 6th and Sunday 7th April.  Games tap off at 10.00am and culminate with the Mixed Open final at 3.30pm on Sunday and the Mens Open final at 4.25pm.  More information available here

Dyfrig, Adam - Barcutiaid

Barcutiaid | Kites; Dyfrig Gibbs (left) and Adam Lopez

All photos copyright, Lleucu Meinir

FILM Pendine 2012 Highlights

Another fantastic weekend of Touch on the beach at Pendine, with Durka Durkas picking up the Women’s and Mixed titles and Cardiff Raptors securing the Men’s trophy.

Below is the highlights video from the weekend.  Enjoy!

WTA have also just announced that next year’s tournament will take place on 24 / 25 August Bank Holiday Weekend 2013.

Wales Touch Association’s annual tournament on Pendine Sands took place over three days with 17 teams and 200 participants competing in U16 Mixed, Mens, Womens and Senior Mixed categories.U16 winners – Ysgol Dyffryn Taf were eventually victorious over Ysgol Bro Myrddin in a thrilling contest which went to extra time and a ‘drop off’. Full report In the Mens competition, Cardiff Raptors were victorious over Durka Durkas with Captain, Gareth Revell (also Wales Mixed Open Captain) explaining;

“We’ve had a great day, we found it difficult with a small squad and teams drove at us hard, but our defence held up so we’re really pleased.”

In the Womens comp, Durka Durkas, featuring a number of women international players who have just returned from the European Touch Championships in Treviso, Italy, took the spoils eventually outclassing Varsity Vandals and the Raptors women.

On Sunday, the mixed comp took place in the wind and rain and it was the combination of the Durkas mens and womens teams that managed to adapt to the elements and beat the Raptors, Varsity and Warwick Knights in the mixed tournament.

Tournament official, Matthew Adams;

“Another fantastic tournament at Pendine. Although it was a scaled down tournament this year with many players on international duty at the Euros, we still had some top quality Touch on display. We’re particularly pleased to add the 5×60 school tournament for the first time and we’re hoping a number of boys and girls have got a taste for the game. “

Ysgol Dyffryn Taf win the 5×60 Pendine Tournament

Ysgol Dyffryn Taf (Whitland) are victorious over Ysgol Bro Myrddin (Carmarthen) in the inaugural Carmarthenshire 5×60 Under 16 Mixed Touch Competition.

Six teams from four Carmarthenshire secondary schools competed in the first ever 5×60 Carmarthenshire Competition held on Pendine Sands.  Ysgol Dyffryn Taf made it through to the final to play against Ysgol Bro Myrddin.  The game eventually went to extra time and a drop off – each team has a player removed every two minutes until a score occurs.  Both teams were down to four players when the winning score came to take Dyffryn Taf to a famous victory.

The day was a fantastic success with Matt Enoch (WTA Development Director) and Gareth Revell (Wales Mixed Open Captain) both being very impressed with the standard of play and in particular, the number of talented female players on show.

Partiular mention should go to one player chosen as the day’s MVP – Alisha Butchers of Queen Elizabeth High School who impressed throughout the tournament and was presented with a Wales Touch playing jersey as a prize.

There are plans to hold development sessions with a chance for. Carmarthenshire youngsters to receive some top class coaching and potentially move up to the elite level.  Gorllewin Gwyllt will advertise these sessions once dates have been confirmed.

Wales Touch are keen to develop the game in the region and aim to produce more international players from Carmarthenshire.

The 5×60 team were really happy with how the tournament went and plan to do more mixed competitions in the near future.  Follow the blog to be kept up to date with all the latest news and events in west Wales.

Don’t forget the fun continues at Pendine this weekend, with Mens, Womens and Mixed competitions all taking place. Some of the top Welsh teams will be playing and there its a chance for all ages to join in during the Family Touch Festival.

5×60 Comp photo album on Facebook

Touch Rugby Hits the Beach at Pendine

2013 Update – Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 August at Pendine – visit www.gorllewingwyllt.com/pendine to register

Wales Touch Association (WTA) announce that their flagship annual beach tournament will take place on Pendine Sands, Carmarthenshire from Friday 28th to Sunday 30th September 2012.

Touch Rugby (usually known simply as Touch) is based on the full contact Rugby League/Union but is a recognized sport in it’s own right.  It is widely popular in the southern hemisphere and is becoming increasingly popular in Wales with leagues and teams in Cardiff, Swansea, Llanelli, Bridgend, RCT and Wrexham amongst others.

For the first time, the Pendine tournament will be delivered in conjunction with Cyffwrdd Gorllewin Gwyllt (Wild West Touch) formed earlier in 2012 in order to promote Touch in west Wales.

Gorllewin Gwyllt Director, Matthew Adams explains;

I’m really looking forward to being part of the Pendine tournament, having heard great things about it over the last 10 years.  We’re hoping to bring our local knowledge and expertise to the event and help inspire some of the locals to get involved.  We also aim to attract some of the teams already playing Touch in west Wales to play in Pendine for the first time.

The tournament takes place a couple of weeks after the conclusion of the European Touch Championships, so many of the players that have been representing their countries will be coming along to bring another season to a close in a social environment.  We’re also welcoming new players young and old to take part in our Family Touch Festival.

The Family Touch Festival is a chance for mums, dads, aunties, uncles and even grandparents to join their children and friends to form a team to play in a family tournament with qualified Touch coaches on hand to pass on their knowledge.  Touch is one of the very few teams sports where this can happen due to the minimal contact and very low risk of injury.

Another new addition to the event, now in it’s tenth year, is the schools tournament.  Opening the weekend on Friday 28th September, will be the 5×60 Carmarthenshire Secondary Schools Under 16 Tournament.  Boys and girls will take to the beach to compete, as Kate Williams, from Carmarthenshire’s Sports Development Unit explains;

‘We wanted the young people of Carmarthenshire to have the chance to experience playing in a mixed Touch tournament.  We’re expecting boys and girls from across the county to come together to represent their schools in mixed teams.  This is the first time we’ve run a mixed tournament, so all the players and staff are really looking forward to it.’

With many of the WTA players, coaches and officials present during the tournament, it’s possible that some new talent will be unearthed, WTA Development Director Matt Enoch elaborates;

We have already picked up two players that have represented Wales in the Touch World Cup and European Championships from the Llanelli module and we know that west Wales is a talent hot spot.  We’re on the look out for players that show potential who will be asked to join a development centre where we aim to produce future internationals.  Pendine will be a great place for players to show us what they can do.

The 2012 tournament will also be helping to celebrating the recent opening of the Wales Coast Path.  Pendine sits on part of the route between Amroth and Laugharne and Countryside Rangers will be offering visitors the chance to go on guided walks during the tournament.  As Countryside Access & Recreation Manager, Eirian James describes;

‘With the opening of the Wales Coast Path it is now possible to walk all the way along the stunningly beautiful Carmarthenshire Bay.  We’ll be offering visitors free guided walks throughout the tournament weekend so that they can sample some of the amazing views on offer.’

For those that don’t wish to play Touch there will be a number of other activities available, such as the guided walks, sand sculpture and the mobile climbing tower from Pendine Outdoor Education Centre.  The Centre will be open during the weekend and offer a wide variety of exciting activities such as climbing, high ropes, abseiling among others, as well as accommodation.  More details at www.pendineoutdoors.co.uk

Schedule:

Friday 28, 10am – 2pm – 5×60 Carmarthenshire Secondary Schools Under 16 Mixed Tournament

Saturday 29, 10am – 4pm (approx) – Men’s Open and Women’s Open competitions

Sunday 30 10am – 4pm (approx) – Mixed Open competition and Family Touch Festival

For further information about Touch and Pendine registration details, go to www.gorllewingwyllt.com or www.facebook.com/wildwesttouch

Contacts:

Matt Adams (Gorllewin Gwyllt) – 07966 235450 matt@gorllewingwyllt.com

Matt Enoch (WTA) – 07983 620962 matthew.enoch@wales.gsi.gov.uk

Gethin Williams (Pendine OEC) – 01994 453659 gjwilliams@sirgar.gov.uk

Pendine Sands Tournament Is On

2013 Update – Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 August at Pendine – visit www.gorllewingwyllt.com to register

Wales Touch Association (WTA) announce that their flagship annual beach tournament will take place on Pendine Sands, Carmarthenshire on Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th September 2012.

REGISTER HERE

Delwedd

There was some doubt whether this would be on this year or not.  This was due to the Pendine tournament traditionally being held on the last weekend of August and therefore being in very close proximity to the Touch European Championships in early September.  However, due to popular demand (and even one team threatening not to speak to them ever again if the tournament didn’t go ahead!) the WTA have decided that Pendine was a must!

For the first time, the tournament will be delivered in partnership with Cyffwrdd Gorllewin Gwyllt (Wild West Touch) which was formed earlier in 2012 in order to promote the game in west Wales and has already hosted the first ever Touch tournament in Llandysul.

Gorllewin Gwyllt Director, Matthew Adams explains;

I’m really looking forward to being part of the Pendine tournament having heard great things about it over the last 10 years.  We’re hoping to bring our local knowledge and expertise to the event and help inspire some of the locals to get involved.  We also aim to attract some of the teams already playing Touch in Llanelli, Swansea and Llandysul to play in Pendine for the first time.

The tournament takes place a couple of weeks after the conclusion of the Euros, so it’s the perfect way for those that have been representing their countries to bring another long season to a close in a social environment.  With good value local accommodation available, as well as camping and some great pubs, it promises to be a fantastic party atmosphere.  It’s also a great chance for teams currently competing in west Wales to test themselves against established teams from across Wales, England and beyond.

Believe it or not, this photo was taken in September!

Men’s Open (MO) and Women’s Open (WO) competitions take place on Saturday 29th September with a Mixed Open (MXO) competition on Sunday 30th September.  Some clubs choose to enter all three competitions with their men’s and women’s teams playing separately on the Saturday and then coming together to form a mixed team on the Sunday.  WTA is offering a cut price of £300 to register three teams, instead of the usual £120 team fee.

More information and registration details will follow soon.  If you want to keep up to date with Touch news in the Wild West, register for our irregular newsletter!  You can also check out the Gorllewin Gwyllt (Wild West) website for all things Touch in the region.

 

Did you know….Pendine is the Anglicisation of the Welsh name, Pentywyn.  Many Welsh place names refer to geographical features with ‘Pen’ meaning ‘Head’ or the ‘Top’ and ‘Tywyn’ meaning ‘Dune’.  

Pendine Online website for further information about the town.