2012/2013 Principality Premiership
Neath 9 v 19 Newport
17 November 2012 - The Gnoll, Neath

Match Report


Newport were more streetwise in overturning Neath, who slumped to their eighth defeat in ten league games.

The Black and Ambers were indebted to their returning winger Mike Poole, who powered over after just nine minutes

But, as the story of the season so far, it was a case of the home side being nailed for yet more defensive discipline issues.

Coach Neil Edwards will want to get to grips with these issues before next Friday's trip to neighbours Swansea, which only a few short seasons ago was a match between the top two, in the Premiership grand final.

Newport got the better of the opening exchanges and, after a couple of penalties pushed the,m into the Neath half, the visitors claimed a lineout between the home ten and 22

The ball was worked into the backs, before a sweet inside ball put Poolei into space from five metres out, and he was not to be denied.

Scott Sneddon added the conversion for a 7-0 lead for the visitors.

There followed a period of play that summed up Neath's season, several opportunities for breaks but handling errors or ill-discipline at the ruck area scupperring scoring chances.

There was a lot of debate on the terrace as to the officials interpretations of the law, but the old adage has always been, even since I was a kid - play the whistle and play the ref in front of you.

Neath did finally get on the board in a busy period of injury time.  Dai Langdon landed three penalties on 40, 42 and 43 minutes, after Newport's discipline eluded them, and the Blacks had an unlikely lead of 9-7 at half time.

After the break Newport came back firing and within ten minutes had retaken the lead, following hands on the floor, via Sneddon's boot.

The former Cardiff and Wanderers man added another penalty on 53, this time for not rolling away, and the visitors had a 13-9 lead.

Frustration grew for the Neath faithful on the hour after referee Perkins binned Captain Lee Evans for, what he deemed persistent infringement.

This raised the ire of the home crowd, most of whom felt the visitors deserved a card in the blaze of penalties just before half time.
Newport carried on regardless and even a change of kicker couldn't throw them off kilter, as Geraint O'Driscoll took over where Sneddon had left off, adding a further penalty on 72 to confirm the victory at 19-9

There was a sense of frustration at full time that, even though Newport deserved the win, this was one that got away for Neath.

Coaches Edwards and Horgan will need to regroup the squad ready for Friday's trip to St.Helen's.

Attendance: 1000

Official : Neil Perkins (Wales)

Neath Newport