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Parker Pen Shield Round Up

Parker Pen Shield  Round Up

Pontypridd and Ebbw Vale will face away quarter finals as they progress into the final eight of the PARKER PEN SHIELD. Caerphilly and Neath will have to try again next season as they crashed out of the competition on foreign soil.

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Ebbw Vale showed their fighting qualities with a sensational display by running in nine tries against Pool One leaders Agen to send them through to the quarter finals and a possible trip to English giants Gloucester.

Full-back Gareth Cull was the Eugene Cross Park hero as he bagged a match haul of 24 points, scoring
two tries, four conversions and two penalties in the 59-10 win.

Vale began the game at express pace, strong forward play and neat passing between the backs destroying the French defence to steer the Steelmen into a 44-0 half-time lead.

Agen looked a pale shadow of the team which had dominated the pool matches with four successive wins. Agen were swept aside by Vale’s passion. There were tries for Welsh international prop Iestyn Harris and Tongan flanker Kati Tuipolotu.

Pontypridd cruised into the quarter-finals, beating Beziers 41-8 with a convincing display in Pool 3.

It took just two minutes for Pontypridd to cross the Beziers try line. A Ceri Sweeney kick was charged down and wing Gareth Wyatt gathered to cross under the posts. Brett Davey converted.

Minutes later Beziers cut the deficit with a penalty from full-back Richard Dourthe but Pontypridd increased their lead in the 15th minute with a magnificent touchdown.

Sonny Parker intercepted in his own 22 and superb passing by the backs put Sweeney over at the posts and Davey again converted.

A Richard Johnston try and Davey conversion added to their first-half lead before Robert Sidoli scored a converted try to make it 31-3 at the interval.

Davey added a 30-metre goal in the second half and, as the game entered its last quarter, Breziers hooker Brice Miguel was sent off after a second yellow card.

In the closing stages number eight Michael Owen added another try, once again converted by Davey, before Beziers gained a consolation try through scrum half Pierre Mignoni.

Caerphilly edged past GR.A.N Parma 31-30 in a thriller in Italy. The Italians led 15-10 at halftime and although Caerphilly came back strongly after the break they home side held out winning the try count 4-3.

Luke Richards was Caerphilly’s man of the match with a try, two conversions, three penalties and a drop goal for a match haul of 21 points

Neath were shocked by Pool 5 bottom side Viadana, crashing 33-26 to almost certainly go out of the Shield competition.

Viadana took the game to Neath and were home and dry midway through the second half before the Welshmen made a belated fightback.

Centre Ryan Pickering raced over for two of Viadana’s three tries and he also clipped a penalty while Ray McDonald slotted over three conversions and three penalties.

Neath’s James Storey went over for a try and Gareth Morris, Kevin James and Shaun Connor followed suit late on.

This loss means that rivals Bristol, who face Bourgoin on Sunday, need only a draw to win the pool.

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