Denbigh Town and Trethomas Bluebirds set for Dragon Signs Amateur Trophy final
There will be a significant first when Denbigh Town and Trethomas Bluebirds meet in the Dragon Signs Amateur Trophy Final on Saturday 29 April (12.00pm) as this will be the first final in the competition to be streamed live with full coverage on RedWall+.
Newtown's Latham Park is the venue for the final with Denbigh Town looking to end a 99-year wait to lift the trophy once again having experienced their one and only success in the competition back in 1923/24. Under the name of Denbigh United, the side claimed the silverware with a 2-1 win over Lovell's Athletic at Mold as captain Ernest Jones lifted the trophy, a feat that current captain Paul Fleming will be desperate to repeat this weekend.
Meanwhile, Trethomas Bluebirds experienced cup glory last season when a solitary goal from Alfie Jones earned them success as the inaugural winners of the Ardal South Cup with a 1-0 win over Cardiff Draconians at Penydarren. Jones has scored two key goals for his side on their way to the final this season, and the Bluebirds remain in contention at the top of the Ardal South East heading into the final weeks of the campaign.
Likewise, Denbigh Town head into the final in superb form having won every single game during 2023 to date, and they are well-positioned to claim the Lock Stock Ardal North West title with games in-hand over Bangor 1876 and CPD Y Rhyl 1879 who currently occupy the places above them. With both teams pushing for league success this season, a close and competitive match is expected to decide the Dragon Signs Amateur Trophy this weekend.
A total of 250 clubs from across Wales that compete at Tier 3 and below in the domestic pyramid entered the Dragon Signs Amateur Trophy this season. Current holders Mold Alexandra, who defeated Baglan Dragons 1-0 in the final last year, are unable to defend their trophy having gained promotion to the JD Cymru North to round off a hugely-successful campaign. Established in 1890 as the Welsh Junior Cup, the competition has become an important part of the calendar for clubs in the lower divisions in recent years.
Denbigh Town began their journey to the final back in September with a comfortable 3-0 win away to Greenfield through goals from Nathan Brown, Sion Jones and substitute Jake Walker. A 3-2 win over ten-man Dolgellau AA followed with Brown and Walker again on target after Craig Rogers had opened the scoring. Brown and Walker continued their goalscoring form as Castell Alun Colts were convincingly beaten 7-2 at Central Park to take Dewi Llion Jones' side into the 4th round.
A hat-trick from Walker helped the side ease past Swansea-based Rockspur 6-1, but there was a tougher challenge ahead as Penydarren Seniors arrived at Central Park and both teams were reduced to ten-men. Matthew Worrall was shown red for Denbigh Town but not before he had opened the scoring, and Jason Foulkes completed the 2-0 victory. Captain Fleming was the hero for Denbigh Town in the last eight at Pill as his two goals earned the side a 2-1 win and setup a semi-final tie against Bridgend Street.
Denbigh Town would reach the final in style as goals from Ben Lockley, Daniel Parry-Jones, Craig Pritchard, Sam Haddon, Foulkes, Brown and a double from Walker sealed the 8-1 victory with Jeff White scoring the consolation goal for Bridgend Street at Victoria Park. To reach the final the side have scored an impressive 31 goals in the competition this season, with Walker claiming eight of those to match his current league record.
Levi Rees was the hat-trick hero for Trethomas Bluebirds in their opening match of the Dragon Signs Amateur Trophy campaign as they eased past Sudbrook CCFC 6-0 in the first round. Two goals from substitute Adam Raymond and further strikes from Lewis Tomlins, Charlie Loss and Gareth Tedstone then ensured that they would make light work of Marshfield with a 5-0 victory. Ethan Edwards then scored twice in the 2-1 win over Cardiff Airport.
A 4-1 win over Undy Athletic followed thanks to Loss, Edwards and a brace from Rees in the next round to setup a difficult trip to Bangor 1876. Jones, the cup hero from the previous season, proved to be the difference as he came off the bench to score twice in the 2-1 win after Tom Clarke had given the home side the lead. A goal from Andrew Evans would then be enough to defeat last seasons runners-up Baglan Dragons in the quarter-finals in February.
Llandrindod Wells would stand between Trethomas Bluebirds and a place in the final, and the Bluebirds cause was not helped when Alex Newman-Jones was shown an early red card. The game appeared to be over when Llandrindod Wells then went three goals ahead inside 35 minutes, but Tedstone replied for Trethomas before half-time to offer hope. Two goals from Jordan Harding in the 2nd half, either side of another goal for Rees, earned a surprise 4-3 win for manager Mark Dunford and with it a place in the final following one of the most dramatic games of the campaign.
Both clubs more than deserve their opportunity to compete for the Dragon Signs Amateur Trophy this season having navigated their way to the final in a competition that began with 250 entrants. Managers Jones and Dunford now have the chance to add another chapter in the long and proud histories of their respective clubs, while live coverage on Red Wall+ opens the competition to whole new audience. Sign up now to see who comes out on top.