Ponty recorded their third victory of the season with a 40-38 bonus point win over a valiant RGC team. The game kicked off in near perfect conditions and it was RGC who struck first with a try after three minutes for lock forward Ilan Evans converted by number 12 Danny Cross. Ponty hit back with immediate effect after a dominant scrum and a pin perfect cross field kick by Burnell resulted in Dale Stuckey dotting down with the extras being missed. To cap off an exhilarating first ten minutes it was the visitors who crossed the whitewash again with a try scored by number 8 Sam Williams converted by Cross.
Some calm was instilled for the next ten minutes with no additional scores and neither side able to gain the ascendancy. It was Ponty who struck next. An infringement from RGC allowed Ponty to kick a penalty to touch deep inside the RGC twenty-two. A smart lineout move resulted in dynamic hooker Ieuan Morris scoring his first try for Ponty in the corner. This was duly converted from wide out by Burnell. A free-flowing move from the Ponty backs resulted in a penalty infringement by RGC and Ponty again opted to kick to touch and from the driving maul Ponty were awarded a further penalty. After some quick thinking from Burnell a quick tap penalty resulted in number 8 Joe Miles getting the touchdown, but the conversion was missed from out wide. This brought an end to an exciting first half where Ponty went in ahead by 17-14.
Half Time Pontypridd 17: 14 RGC
With both sets of fans hoping for a second half much like the first, it was RGC who started the second half proceedings. After a free-flowing move from a scrum RGC failed to take the most of the opportunity by spilling the ball forward with the line at their mercy. The visitors however did not dwell on their error and kept up the pressure on Ponty resulting in blindside flanker Dan Owen scoring a try however this time Cross failed to add the extras giving RGC a slender lead by 19-17 early into the second half. It was Ponty who scored next in this topsy turvy encounter with Ieuan Morris claiming his second try of the game after a rumble from the forwards with Burnell once more adding the extras. With Ponty gaining some ascendancy in the game a high tackle on full back Lloyd Rowlands resulted in a yellow card for RGC replacement Matt Buchanan. Ponty again opted for a kick to the corner and were once again rewarded for their exploits after a free flowing move full back Rowlands scored out wide. The resulting conversion was missed with Ponty now opening up a ten point lead by 29-19 with almost half an hour left of a so far pulsating contest.
Neither side were willing to concede defeat and with no let-up in the scoring it was RGC who were next on the scoreboard with left winger Rhys Tudor crossing after 55 minutes again duly converted by centre Cross. Straight from the restart an infringement from Ponty resulted in a penalty to RGC. An excellent kick to touch deep into the twenty two allowed hooker Brodie Coghlan to score from close range although Cross failed to add the extras this time around. The score now being 31-29 to the men from North Wales with twenty minutes left of the game.
Entering the final twenty minutes Ponty made use of their bench with a new front row of Devine, Huish and Harper coming on and gaining the upper hand in the scrum forcing RGC to concede a scrum penalty on 65 minutes which Burnell duly converted giving Ponty a slender 32-31 lead. With a combination of some smart play from RGC and a penalty infringement from the home side RGC gained possession deep into the home sides twenty two. From the ensuing lineout man-mountain RGC prop Pedr Jones touched down with the extras added by Cross. With RGC now in the lead going into the final ten minutes and the lead changing hands seven times so far in the game, the home fans urged their side on for one final push.
From another dominant scrum Ponty were awarded a penalty and chose to kick to the corner looking to again regain the lead. From the ensuing rolling maul the ball was put through the hands with replacement winger Joe Davies scoring in the corner. Burnell missed a tough kick from wide out allowing RGC to hang on to a slender one point lead by 38-37. From the kick off, RGC kicked the ball straight out handing Ponty a scrum on half way. From the resultant scrum Ponty were awarded another scrum penalty after impressive work from the forwards. The crowd waited with bated breath as Burnell stepped up and nailed the penalty kick to give Ponty the lead once more by 40-38. With seconds remaining RGC were camped on the Ponty line and after some heroic last ditch tackling RGC conceded a penalty which Ponty kicked straight into touch to bring to an end to what can only be described as one of the most entertaining games seen at Sardis for some time. The final score at Sardis Road Ponty 40-38 RGC.
15. Lloyd Rowlands (Joe Davies). 14. Morgan Richards. 13. Morgan Sieniawski (c). 12. Ceri Morris (Bradley Roderick). 11. Dale Stuckey. 10. Ben Burnell. 9. Dafydd Buckland (Joel Raikes).
1. Ben Stephens (Tom Devine). 2. Ieuan Morris (Nathan Huish). 3. Morgan Bosanko (Tom Harper). 4. Jack Pope (Sion Parry). 5. Chris Dicomidis. 6. Kristian Parker. 7. Rhys Shellard (Cally James). 8. Joe Miles
Subs: 16. Nathan Huish. 17. Tom Devine. 18. Tom Harper. 19. Cally James. 20. Sion Parry. 21. Joel Raikes. 22. Bradley Roderick. 23. Joe Davies.
Tries: Stuckey, Morris x 2, Miles, Rowlands, Joe Davies
Conversions: Burnell x2
Penalties: Burnell x2
15. Afon Bagshaw (c). 14. Kieran Dixon. 13. Rhys Williams (Matt Buchanan). 12. Danny Cross. 11. Rhys Tudor. 10. Evan Lloyd. 9. Tom Ellis.
1. Jessie Williams. 2. Brodie Coghlan. 3. Pedr Jones. 4. Bryn Jones. 5. Ilan Evans 6. Dan Owen 7. Samuel Hughes (Ethan Fackrell). 8. Sam Williams
Subs 16. Aaron Williams. 17. Will Sanderson. 18. Christian Hone. 19. Danny Evans. 20. Ethan Fackrell. 21. Cole Potts. 22. Matt Buchanan. 23. Zac Clow.
Tries: I. Evans, S. Williams, Owen, Tudor, Coghlan, Pedr Jones
Conversions: Cross x 4
Referee: Elfyn Morris-Roberts
Golden Bob – Chris Dicomidis
WRU MOTM – Chris Dicomidis