Cynon Valley - - RUGBY UNION -

BARGOED .................... 10 PON­TYPRIDD .............. 29

BARGOED put in a huge de­fen­sive shift to re­strict a ram­pant Pon­typridd side to a four tries to two vic­tory at Bargoed Park.

A slick Pon­typridd out­fit came out of the blocks brim­ming with con­fi­dence fol­low­ing their de­mo­li­tion of Merthyr the pre­vi­ous week and played with pace, power and width but couldn’t break down a res­o­lute Bulls de­fence.

Diggy Bird, the Ponty out­side half put over a 40 me­tre penalty to take an early lead. After be­ing un­der the cosh for much of the first quar­ter, Bargoed broke out of de­fence with cen­tre Jor­dan How­ells com­ing close to scor­ing a try for the home side fol­low­ing a sear­ing run by David Evans. The wing put in a deftly weighted grub­ber kick which sat up nicely for How­ells to gather just short of the line. The ball was re­cy­cled but Bargoed were pe­nalised for a tackle with­out the ball and Ponty cleared.

Min­utes later, Pon­typridd pun­ished the Bulls for not tak­ing their op­por­tu­nity with wing Alex Web­ber put­ting full back Lloyd Row­lands over in the corner. Bird con­verted well from the touch­line to make it 0-10 after 23 min­utes.

Bargoed re­turned to de­fen­sive duty and held out un­til three min­utes from the break when Rhys Shel­lard scored Ponty’s sec­ond to make it 0-17 at half-time with Bird’s con­ver­sion.

The Bulls looked more com­posed in the sec­ond half and ben­e­fit­ted from a de­cep­tively strong breeze but still couldn’t get on the score­board and the ex­pe­ri­enced Ceri Sweeney, on as a sub, scored their third with vir­tu­ally his first touch and con­vert­ing his own try to take the score to 0-24 on the hour. The bonus point try came three min­utes later with the im­pres­sive Alex Web­ber go­ing over for an un­con­verted try.

Bargoed stuck to their task and were re­warded with a Jor­dan How­ells in­ter­cep­tion from half way and were un­lucky mo­ments later when a Dar­ren Humphries charge­down didn’t go to hand.

Bargoed’s sec­ond try came from a Calum Jones penalty to the Pon­typridd 22.

A clean catch and drive looked to have had enough mo­men­tum to cross the line but ref­eree Dewi Phillips sig­nalled a penalty ad­van­tage as the maul was stopped il­le­gally. Bargoed played on with wing David Evans fin­ish­ing off the move at the corner flag.

The con­ver­sion went wide from the touch­line but ref­eree Phillips wasn’t fin­ished and binned Ponty lock Sean Moore for bring­ing down the maul. That was the fi­nal score of the game Ponty vic­to­ri­ous at 10-29.

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