Following last week’s mid-week round of Welsh Premier League fixtures, there’s more midweek football tonight with theWord. Cup second round featuring 16 teams from five divisions throughout the Welsh football system, including one all-WPL clash.
In the Northern section of the draw, third-tier Penrhyncoch will be looking to go one better after dumping out Newtown on penalties in the previous round and face Airbus at the Airfield.
Last year’s losing finalists Bala Town face a very difficult trip to Caernarfon. The Cyrmu Alliance side will be very difficult to beat at home, especially after recording a big derby victory over Bangor City in the first round.
The tie between Holyhead Hotspur and Denbigh Town means that at least one Cymru Alliance side is guaranteed to advance, both are enjoying solid starts to the season in the league and are second and fourth respectively.
Relegated from the WPL last season, Prestatyn have found the going tough after a bright start and have struggled to find consistency. Connah’s Quay are the visitors to Bastion Gardens and with a large squad, you wonder whether Alan Bickerstaff might look to rest some of his senior players and take the opportunity to blood some of the promising youngsters that the club are keen to promote.
TNS will be favourites to defend their crown at home to Holywell Town. The Cyrmu Alliance side are going strong in the having notched four-straight league wins and are a point off the top the table – should Craig Harrison, as I expect, decide to rotate his squad, could the in-form Wellmen cause an upset?
Down south, the headline tie is between Haverfordwest County and Aberystwyth.
Neither side has a particularly large squads so expect to see fairly strong teams for both. A win in the first round kick-started Haverfordwest’s season as they went on to record back-to-back wins, a win over Aber could well have the same effect. One name to watch out for is 16-year-old Jack Rimmer – he featured for Aberystwyth in the first round and looks to be quite something. He could well be handed another chance here as could striker Rhys Griffiths, who needs minutes having returned from injury.
Port Talbot visit Ton Pentre, fifth in the Welsh League, with their tails between their legs following an unexpected heavy home defeat to Llandudno on Saturday. Few would’ve saw that one coming after an encouraging start at the GenQuip Stadium but Andy Dyer has competition for places and he’ll be telling a few tonight to go out and make the shirt their own.
The lowest ranked team in the competition, Pontypridd Town of Welsh League Division Three, face a very testing visit to Richmond Park. Carmarthen Town’s Luke Prosser scored five for the Old Gold in their first round win over Briton Ferry Llansawel, he’ll be hoping to add to his tally here.
Fixtures: (North) Airbus v Penrhyncoch, Caernarfon v Bala, Holyhead v Denbigh, Prestatyn v Connah’s Quay, TNS v Holywell. (South) Carmarthen v Pontypridd, Haverfordwest v Aberystwyth, Ton Pentre v Port Talbot.