The most decorated player in the league’s history is the next inductee into the Welsh Premier League Hall of Fame.
Gary Lloyd won eighteen medals while playing in the league between 1992 and 2009.
After starting his career at local club Llanelli, it was with his next club, Barry Town, that Lloyd enjoyed his greatest successes.
Lloyd won the league Championship seven times in eight season during the club’s golden era, also winning the Welsh Cup four times and the League Cup four times too.
He played 282 games for Barry between 1994 and 2003, making him the club’s record appearance-maker in the Welsh Premier.
Following the club’s financial problems, Lloyd joined Newport in 2003 and spent a season at the club – the only season since Welsh Premier’s inception in 1992 that Lloyd did not play or coach in the league.
He returned to the league in 2004 to play for Carmarthen and had another successful spell, winning the League Cup for the fifth time and reaching the Welsh Cup final in 2005.
Lloyd’s finest hour for Carmarthen came in the UEFA Cup, scoring twice in the club’s 5-1 victory against Longford Town, the Old Gold’s first win in Europe and a result that still endures as one of the heaviest victories by a Welsh Premier League team in Europe.
In 2006, he returned to his first club, Llanelli, where his father was also a hero in the 70s. Lloyd won the Championship for the eighth time and the League Cup for the sixth time in his career with the club.
Lloyd made 29 full appearances in European games for Barry Town, Carmarthen and Llanelli, which is another Welsh Premier League record.
He played in many memorable games on the continental game, for Barry against Aberdeen, Dinamo Kiev and Porto, as well as playing in four victories for Welsh teams against sides from Latvia, Hungary, Ireland and Sweden.
Lloyd is also the only player to have been called up to the Wales full national squad while still playing in the national league, to face Belgium in 1997.
Despite not winning a full cap, Lloyd represented Wales in the ‘B’ team and was captain of the semi-professional side.
Lloyd scored 90 goals in the league, often spectacular free kicks with his cultured left foot and by his retirement as a player in 2009, Lloyd had played over 500 games in the Welsh Premier League.
Only two others have played more games in the league – Colin Reynolds and Andrew Thomas – two others who have been inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Lloyd’s has an ongoing connection with the league as part of Andy Legg’s coaching team at Llanelli and in 2011, Lloyd was the first recipient of the FAW award for Welsh Premier League Clubman of the Year for his services to the community in Llanelli as a coach.
Without doubt, Lloyd is one of the best players in the league’s history and he’s certainly the league’s most-decorated player.
On this day in 1985 Phil Dwyer played his last game for Cardiff City in a 4-1 defeat against Notts County.