IT’S been an eventful season so far at Ogmore Vale and the drama is likely to continue for the final few weeks of the season.
Back in May, the club were on a high after earning promotion to Three West Central B, along with Alltwen, Cefn Cribbwr, Pontrhydyfen and Rhigos.
But fast-forward 11 months and Ogmore Vale are the only team from that group fighting for survival.
The club occupy one of the two spots in the relegation zone, three points above bottom club Glyncorrwg who they face on Thursday.
They are level on points with a resurgent Crynant side, which has won three from the last four league games and has four games in hand while Glyncorrwg have three.
Fixture secretary Gareth Cord admitted he felt the club would go on to have a good season but pointed to a drop in player numbers as a reason for their poor form.
“We got promoted from C up to B and we thought we’d do well in it,” he said.
“We kept the squad throughout the summer and at the beginning of the season we were okay but they’ve dropped off towards the end.
“We had about three bad injuries, we lost one to work and two boys to Maesteg – I can’t blame them as it’s higher level rugby.
“It’s more about losing players to bigger clubs, it’s the same for most clubs up the valley now, they struggle to get the players in.
“Some weeks [we struggle], this Saturday we had 15 boys and lost two of them during the game so we went down to 13 then.
“You get the same 12 regulars and other boys help out now and again. When we had a full side we beat Vardre, [who were] top of the league at the time.
“When we get our full side out we have got a good side, it’s just getting that full side out which is the real problem.”
Ogmore Vale have won just four of their 19 league fixtures.
Along with success over Vardre (2417), they’ve also beaten Rhigos (2516), Glyncorrwg (19-7) and Bryncethin (27-0) all at home.
But losing players hasn’t been the club’s only worry. “We lost our coach. “He had a years ban from the touchline so he said he can’t coach if he can’t get on the field so there was no point in him doing it,” Card added.
“He had a yellow card previously so he had a warning from the referee.
“It wasn’t so much arguing but what he called the ref and I think the WRU stamped over that quite heavy, which I agree with – he shouldn’t be calling the referee names.
“It was in December, he stayed on for a couple of weeks but he said he couldn’t do it.
“He wasn’t even allowed on the field, he had to stay behind the barriers.
“One of the ex-players, Gavin Beckey, is just helping out now, he’s been there a while.”
The next few weeks will determine where Ogmore Vale play their rugby next season but the odds are against them to beat the drop.
Although Card isn’t too worried if they do go back down.
“We’ll play the season out and then we’ll have to regroup and try and get something ready for the summer,” he continued.
“I think it’s probably better for us if we do go down because we are struggling a bit.
“It boosts the boys when they are winning.
“We always start well at the start of the season and if you’re winning the boys are more inclined to stay at the club.”