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Ponty Lift The Principality

Ponty Lift The Principality

Pontypridd won the Principality Cup for the first time since 1996 at the Millennium Stadium and kept on course for an historic Cup double winning season.
Brett Davey, so often the Ponty hero this season, scored all the points including an 87th minute penalty to send the Ponty fans into a frenzy as they stole the Principality Cup from the Scarlets and stopped them from clinching a league and cup double.
Having kicked Ponty to the final, ice-cool Davey held his nerve as all around were losing theirs and slotted over the winning kick from 30 metres.
It was a fitting way to end a dramatic afternoon in Cardiff, Ponty continuing their rich vein of form ahead of Sunday’s PARKER PEN SHIELD final against Sale Sharks.
Pontypridd struck first and last in the game through Davey with the full-back breaking the deadlock in the ninth minute when he kicked the first of his five penalties.
Stephen Jones replied with his first of three and then, after a superb break from Scott Quinnell and Martyn Madden on the right, Leigh Davies muscled his way over for a great try in the right corner.
The remainder of the first half saw the sides exchanging penalties and Jones’ 25 metre effort on the stroke of half time was enough to see the Scarlets run in 11-9 ahead at the break.
The second half started with a bang with the Scarlets pushing forward in pursuit of more points.
Madden nearly touched down, but he knocked on at the crucial moment. However the referee pulled the play back for an earlier offside and up stepped Jones to add another three.
Scarlet fans were smiling, and it seemed as the Welsh/Scottish League champions were heading for their second piece of silverware this season.
But an injury to centre Leigh Davies brought a premature end to his afternoon and Scarelts’ coach Gareth Jenkins introduced Gareth Bowen. The youngster stepped in at fly half with Jones switching to the centre where he linked up with Matt Cardey.
Llanelli were beginning to turn the screw, but Pontypridd were in no mood to lie down and after a devastating break from Jon Bryant, Davey was given yet another chance to find his range. He did so with a fourth successful penalty.
Pontypridd proved that they are a team to be reckoned with on any stage and at any level, and they proved as much 13 minutes from time.
A Gareth Wyatt dash to the line was called back for a slight knock-on by Davey earlier in the move, but this merely served to spur on the Valley Commandos.
A matter of 30 seconds later they worked some decent second phase ball out wide to enable Sonny Parker to carve his way through and feed Davey for the crucial try.
His conversion would have taken Ponty in front but from the left-hand side hsi kick struck an upright.
It was thrill-a-minute stuff as the clock counted down. From somewhere the referee found nearly 10 minutes of injury time and, as the fans were screaming for the whistle to signal extra time, Ponty were awarded a penalty.
Davey stepped up and broke Scarlet hearts in a near carbon copy way to the Heineken Cup semi-final defeat by Leicester.
Now Ponty will focus their attention on the up coming match against Zurich Premiership runners-up Sale Sharks in next Sunday’s PARKER PEN SHIELD final. With both sides in such fine form, it promises to be a great occasion.

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Llanelli: Try: Leigh Davies; Pens: Stephen Jones 3; DG: Stephen Jones.
Pontypridd: Try: Brett Davey; Pens: Brett Davey 5.

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