The Orchard Welsh Premier Women’s League kicked off on Sunday, with defending champions Cardiff Met making a winning start and Abergavenny taking the points at Swansea City.
Met fightback to win Cyncoed derby
Cardiff Met had to come from behind to beat Cyncoed 3-1, Caitlin Bevan having given their local rivals the lead shortly before half time. The Archers hit back with three goals in a dozen minutes, as Stacey Ayling nodded in a corner and converted a penalty after Cyncoed had a player sent off for handball, while Rebecca Mathias completed the scoring with 20 minutes still to play.
Abergavenny grab late winner at Swansea
Another big match had last season’s runners-up Swansea City hosting Abergavenny who finished third and it was the visitors who scored the only goal. Stacey John-Davis saw her effort for the Swans cleared off the line before half-time, with the visitors’ Lauren Boyd finding the net via a set-piece 6 minutes from the end.
Curran & Thomas at the double for Port Talbot
Port Talbot Town posted a 4-2 winning scoreline away at Llandudno, having scored twice inside 11 minutes through a Courtney Thomas brace. Fflur Williams pulled one back but then Jessica Curran struck twice to secure the win, despite Sofie Owen getting the hosts’ second goal on 71 minutes.
Rhyl ran out 5-0 winners over Caernarfon Town, Ashleigh Mills making a great start to the campaign with a hat-trick. Toicha Dickens and Amy Webster got the home team’s other goals.
Bluebirds hit Briton Ferry for six
Briton Ferry Llansawel’s return to the league was a rough one with a 6-0 home defeat to Cardiff City FC Women, who thereby became the opening day leaders. Montana May crossed for Catherine Walsh to head in before scoring herself on half-time. Alana Murphy scored twice and Walsh netted twice more to make it a treble.
With the league season now underway, Orchard Media and Events Group are to continue its sponsorship of the WPWL for a third year.
Orchard’s production team has made video case studies of all the women’s clubs in the league, plus two programmes on the successful run of the Welsh women’s team for BBC Wales, Women in Red, the second of which aired last Thursday on the eve of the crunch qualifying game.
Commenting on the deal, Lucy Kelly, Orchard WPWL Secretary, said: “We’re delighted to have Orchard back on board. They are a great supporter of Women’s football in Wales over the past two seasons, and we are pleased that they not only want to continue that support, but extend it into helping us grow the coverage of the game and the League further.”
An Orchard spokesperson said: “Since its launch in 2009, the women’s game here in Wales has seen an increasing growth in popularity, with the league growing to 12 teams. As proud supporters of Welsh sport and women in football, we want to play our part in this success by boosting the sport at club level to ensure long-term benefit.”