Pooler Power Knocks Cardiff out of the Cup; THE NATIONAL CUP CARDIFF ................32 PONTYPOOL ..........43 Tries: G Thompson, E Lewis Cons: G Thompson (2) Pens: G Thompson (6) Tries: N Brooks, J Hurley, C Gullis, R Nash Cons: M Jones (4) Pens: Jones (5) REFEREE: Craig Evans (WRU)

Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales), February 20, 2017 | Go to article overview

Pooler Power Knocks Cardiff out of the Cup; THE NATIONAL CUP CARDIFF ................32 PONTYPOOL ..........43 Tries: G Thompson, E Lewis Cons: G Thompson (2) Pens: G Thompson (6) Tries: N Brooks, J Hurley, C Gullis, R Nash Cons: M Jones (4) Pens: Jones (5) REFEREE: Craig Evans (WRU)


JUBILANT Pontypool head coach Leighton Jones hailed his side's mental toughness after seeing them dump another Principality Premiership club out of this season's WRU National Cup.

Pooler surged into the quarterfinals thanks to an Arms Park performance and result that eclipsed their 19-11 win over Llanelli at Parc y Scarlets in the previous round.

Nathan Brooks, Josh Hurley, Clayton Gullis and Rob Nash scored the visitors' tries, while fly-half Matthew Jones kicked 23 points to the delight of a big travelling support.

Cardiff's Gareth Thompson registered a personal haul of 27 points and the hosts led 19-17 at the interval, but a powerful second-half display saw the Championship leaders prevail.

"I don't think I'm biased in saying the best team won," said Pooler chief Jones.

"They chucked a lot at us at the start and we gave away a couple of cheap penalties, and I think indiscipline has probably cost us 15 points. "We spoke about discipline at halftime and stamping our style on the game, and I think showed that in the second half.

"We mixed it up a bit and scored a couple of nice tries, we didn't just use our forward grunt, so we were very pleased with the overall performance.

"Cardiff thought they would play a fast and expansive game but our boys are conditioned to a high standard so we were never really worried about coming down and playing a fast game."

He added: "For me, the pleasing thing was the mental strength of the team and our togetherness.

"Even when we did have our backs against the wall we had that selfbelief that we could keep going. "Our conditioning coach, Simon Church, has done a fantastic job with the boys and we've seen the players get stronger throughout the season.

"There's no let up from us, we can play with that tempo and intensity for 80 minutes, and we're not worried about what's in front of us."

Jones is not too fussed about his side's opponents in the last eight, although he wouldn't say no to a home tie at Pontypool Park.

Cardiff: R Williams (J Whittingham 54); J Beal, L Chalke (P King 59), W Rees-Hole, C Young; G Thompson, L Free; R Lewis (G Nash 71), E Lewis, A Rees, J Davies, J Murphy, J Sheekey (J Edwards 51), J Viggers (J Edwards 19-28, J Tomlinson 54), B Thomas Pontypool: K Meek; N Brooks, D Robinson (C Gullis 36), S Tu'ipulotu (T Hancock 71), J Hurley; M Jones, A Quick (R Dyer 80); A Coundley (J Jeune 80+2), B Parry (A Watkins 64), O Drake (R Harford 80+5), G Rusby-Davies (B Egan 78), M Thomas, J Williams (C Davies 80+6), R Nash, B Sparks PONTYPRIDD ......................34 PONTYPRIDD are through to the quarter-finals of the WRU National Cup but Newport can take positives out of the defeat after they staged a gallant but ultimately futile comeback.

The visitors threatened to grasp victory from the jaws of defeat at Sardis Park, having come back from 31-3 down to bring themselves within five points. Winger Elliott Frewen, fresh from Wales sevens duty, who did score one of Newport's four tries failed to keep hold of the ball late on as the Gwent side's hopes of an unlikely comeback fell short.

Pontypridd beat Cardiff Met in the first round and welcomed back scrum-half Wayne Evans - who suffered concussion in that fixture - onto the scoresheet against Newport.

Ponty's team manager, Richard Langmead, said his side "switched off" at 31-3, adding his side cannot rest on their laurels once in winning positions.

BEDWAS ................................14 MERTHYR .............................head coach Lee Jarvis is confident the Ironmen can end the season with at least one trophy after they beat Bedwas to advance to the quarterfinals of the National Cup.

Jarvis' men are still in three competitions with a Foster's Cup semi final against Carmarthen Quins to come next month along with the next round of the National Cup while there is still plenty to play for in Tier One of the Principality Premiership. …

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Pooler Power Knocks Cardiff out of the Cup; THE NATIONAL CUP CARDIFF ................32 PONTYPOOL ..........43 Tries: G Thompson, E Lewis Cons: G Thompson (2) Pens: G Thompson (6) Tries: N Brooks, J Hurley, C Gullis, R Nash Cons: M Jones (4) Pens: Jones (5) REFEREE: Craig Evans (WRU)
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