WRU East One
Pontypool United 10
Abergavenny entertained Pontypool United on Saturday in a must win game for both sides at the bottom of the WRU East One table.
Abergavenny selected Connor Davies, Liam Newton, Matt Charles, James Trumper, Callum Poole, Seren Strong-Wright, Angus Brown, Rhob Connick, Rhys Jones, Ieuan Evans, Rob Lewis, James Lewis, Lloyd Holder, Nathan Williams.
The hosts began the game strongly, putting pressure on the Pontypool defense and were rewarded with a penalty to take a 3- 0 lead.
Pontypool then came into the game and scored a well taken try to take a 7-3 lead, which remained the score to half-time, despite Abergavenny having the lions’ share of possession and squandering many scoring opportunities.
Pontypool then extended their lead to 10-3 at the beginning of the second-half with another penalty and for the next 20 minutes controlled the game, spending the whole of this period in the Abergavenny 22.
However solid defense prevented them from scoring any further points.
And Matt Hancock, Jay Admans and Anthony Squire’s introduction gave the hosts a boost of energy and this really showed as Pontypool began to tire.
With 10 minutes left, Nathan Williams broke the Pontypool defense and fed Squire whose pace enabled him to race over unopposed, converted by Rhys Jones.
At 10 points each and the final whistle approaching, the home supporters found their voice when Williams broke loose once again.
Although he couldn’t quite make the line, from the resulting scrum, good forward work enabled Rhob Connick to dive over for the try, converted by Rhys Jones to secure a very welcome victory, which lifts Aber to ninth in the 12-strong league.
At the top of the table, near neighbours Brynmawr had to fight to beat bottom-half Senghenydd 17-13 away, which leaves them a point behind table toppers Talywain with a game in hand.
Blaenavon also leapfrogged Bedlinog to fifth by beating them 20-12 at home.
Usk also enjoyed victory, seeing off East 2 basement boys Caerleon 25-0 at home to stay sixth.
And Crickhowell romped to a 45-12 home win over St Julians HSOB to go sixth in East 4, but Forgeside’s home match with West Mon was postponed.
Grassroots rugb y takes a back seat largely as the Six Nations gets under way this weekend, although Brynmawr visit Dowlais on friday (February 2) night, kick-off 7.15pm before a table-topping clash at Talywain on Saturday, February 10 (ko 1pm).