Barry Town hoping for another good Welsh Cup run
12:02pm Tuesday 5th November 2013 in Sport
ONE OF the oldest cup competitions in world football returns to Barry this weekend as Barry Town United entertains Undy Athletic in the Welsh Cup at Jenner Park (2pm).
The Welsh Cup has been contested every peacetime season since its inception back in 1877. In that time, a total of six Barry sides have brought the grand old trophy home, most famously in 1955 and 1994 after wins against Chester and Cardiff City respectively.
Although the town's last taste of silverware came more than a decade ago, recent times have rekindled the Barry supporters' love affair with the 136-year old competition.
In 2011, Gavin Chesterfield's team snatched a sensational 3-0 win over Merthyr at Penydarren Park and led at Newport County, before eventually falling to a 3-2 defeat.
While the exiles' return to the cup would be fleeting, Barry's rekindled interest in the Welsh Cup would continue. Last season, the same team surpassed all expectations to reach the semi-finals, the first time an all-amateur Barry side had ever progressed to that stage. That run culminated in a historic first meeting with Prestatyn Town, the trophy's eventual winners, no less.
This Saturday brings another new challenge in the form of an established Welsh League Division 2 outfit. Undy Athletic finished fourth in last season and have maintained good form this campaign to collect 18 points from their first ten outings. Entering at the second qualifying round stage, Undy beat Trethomas, of the Gwent County League, and Presteigne St Andrews, of the Spar Mid Wales League, to secure their second round berth.
Obliged to enter one step earlier, Barry, meanwhile, have beaten Treforest, Rumney and Taffs Well to set up Saturday's tie.
After 200-plus supporters backed the team in the last round, it is hoped another healthy crowd will be in attendance as the Town attempt to progress. With replays no longer in effect in the Welsh Cup, Saturday's match will have to be settled on the day, with extra-time and penalty kicks on standby if required.
For both sides, a place in the non-regionalised third round, where all 12 Welsh Premier League teams will enter, dangles tantalisingly in the distance. Entry on Saturday will be £4 (adult), £3 (OAP/student) and £2 (unaccompanied child) at both the Gladstone Road and Barry Road gates.
Barry Town United will be donating all proceeds from sales of Saturday's match day programme to the Royal British Legion's Poppy Appeal. The special programme will cost the usual £1, though spectators are encouraged to give generously in support of this most worthy of causes.