PRINCIPALITY PREMIERSHIP EAST
PONTYPRIDD .............. 45 EBBW VALE ................. 12
PONTYPRIDD got off to the perfect start as winger Dale Stuckey broke down the blindside to set up Chris Dicomidis who finished off an excellent opening phase of play with a touchdown, outside half Diggy Bird converting the score.
From the restart home centre Geriant Walsh sped through the Ebbw defence to feed full back Lloyd Rowlands who crossed for another Ponty try, which Bird again converted.
With Ponty looking dangerous out wide and on course for another try, Ebbw countered up field and capitalised on an error to claim their first try as scrum half Carl Lewis scored out wide. Outside half Lewis Dennett then added the conversion from the touchline.
The Ponty forwards soon got in on the action to lay the platform for the next home try when wing Dale Stuckey touched down after an excellent lineout drive close to the Steelmen’s line.
The outstanding opening from Ponty continued straight from the restart which Chris Dicomidis gathered to send Dale Stuckey racing clear, launching a chip and chase over the full back to complete his try double and claiming the early bonus-point score.
Ponty were dominant and the tries kept coming. This time winger Alex Webber stepped through the porous Ebbw defence to score under the posts with Diggy Bird easily converting from in front of the posts.
During Ebbw’s first concerted attack of the half, home flanker Rhys Shellard was sin-binned when he failed to retreat from a quick tap penalty. The Steelmen could not take advantage neither could Ponty retaliate to end a half they dominated with some scintillating rugby to go in at the break 31-7 ahead.
Remarkably it was a full 15 minutes into a lowkey second period before Ponty scored their next try.
After concerted pressure on the visitors’ line, prop Chris Phillips burrowed over after latching onto a smart pass by scrum half Wayne Evans. Diggy Bird then expertly converted the try from out wide.
The game had lost its spark with chances at a premium, with Ebbw winger Toby Fricker in the meantime sin binned for infringing at the breakdown.
Despite being down to 14 men, Ebbw Vale worked the ball wide for full back Dan Haymond to score next to the corner flag.
With the clock on 80 minutes, it would be Ponty who deservedly scored the last try of the match when Geraint Walsh rounded off a wide attack from a tap penalty with a try next to the posts which replacement Jordan Rees converted.
With the referee blowing for time straight after the conversion it brought to an end a match in which Ponty’s dominant first-half display ensured a convincing bonus-point 45-12 victory.