Pontypridd enjoyed all the early territory and possession, tentatively probing into their opponents’ twenty-two, but although going close on occasion failing to cut through for a score.
It was a dynamic burst from centre Gary Williams which eventually broke the deadlock on nineteen minutes, with Dean Gunter converting the try. Ponty kept up the pressure, lively scrum half Rhys Downes going close in the corner, then wing Owen Williams and flanker Wayne O’Connor surging through, an infringement off the ball resulting in a penalty try which Gunter converted.
A Gunter penalty kept the scoreboard in motion before debutant lock Cory Hill barged over for a try, converted by Gunter, emphasising Ponty’s dominance of the contest so far.
A late repost from Llanelli saw scrum half Aled Davies sniping through for a try which Steven Shingler converted, but the interval scoreline of 24pts to 7 being a true reflection of events.
Llanelli continued to battle their way into contention in a more evenly balanced second period, with Ponty lock Hill dispatched to the sin bin. The home side soon gained their composure, Hill coming back into play to crash over for a try from an attacking line out, and then a dynamic maul allowing hooker Kristian Dacey to burst through for another score, this time converted by Gunter.
Ponty were energetic and creative, attacking from all angles and looking comfortable in the lead. As Llanelli countered, Ponty wing Chris Clayton was sin binned and Llanelli then working an overlap for wing Steve Martin to score a try converted from a wide angle by Shingler.
Moving up yet another gear in the last ten minutes, the home side sent winger Lewis Williams weaving and bobbing his way to the try line, his score converted by Gunter, and the Ponty outside half then latching on to a Downes cross kick to score another try.
A bonus point win by 48pts to 14 had seen Ponty secure qualification for next season’s British & Irish Cup, and a mutual show of respect between players and supporters rounding off an excellent night’s work at Sardis Road.
15.Matthew Nuthall. 14.Owen Williams (Chris Clayton). 13.Adam Thomas (Matthew Hutchings). 12.Gary Williams. 11.Lewis Williams. 10.Dean Gunter. 9.Rhys Downes (Gavin Morris).
1.Jon Williams (Nathan Trevett). 2.Kristian Dacey (Tom Hetherington). 3.Ryan Harford. 4.Cory Hill (Grant Harrington). 5.Ryan Savage. 6.Wayne O’Connor. 7.Darren Waters (Rhys Lloyd). 8.Chris Dicomidis.
“Golden Bob” man of the match: Gary Williams
|Tries: G.Williams(19),Penalty(27), Hill (36,55), Dacey(60), L.Williams(74), Gunter (75)||Tries: A.Davies(39), Martin (71)|
|Cons: Gunter (19,27,36,60,74)||Cons: Shingler (40,71)|
|Pen: Gunter (31)|