Tenby United 53
Tenby United secured the championship trophy for Division Two (West) with a scintillating win at Pontyberem that showed the skill and power of a squad which finishes the season with a playing record of Played 20 W16 D0 L4 Pts 79 – giving them a four point cushion over also-promoted Tycroes.
The Seasiders went into this final fixture knowing they needed two points to take the title and having already beaten Pontyberem by 57-19 at Heywood Lane, but aware that clubs can use the permit situation to their advantage.
But skipper Luke Hansford soon had his team in front as he scored their opening try to settle any pre-match nerves and he was followed by a try from flanker Andrew Cook, one of the outstanding successes in the Seasiders’ team this campaign, plus another from livewire second row Luke Dedman.
All three were converted by outside half Ashley Sutton, in terrific form with the boot as he also notched two penalties to give his side a comfortable 27-0 lead at half time and with Pontyberem already showing signs of fatigue.
The powerful front row of Rob Luly, Dan Allen and Rob Clark had already shown its power in the set-pieces and with Dedman and Mike Davies forming an effective second-row combination The Seasiders were able to utilise back rowers Cook, Hansford and No 8 Barry Parsons as real ball winners that allowed Sutton and half back partner Matthew Morgan to control play.
As referee Adrian Slade kept play fluid with his approach to the advantage rule the pattern of play continued in the second period, despite the efforts of Nico Setaro at fly half and skipper Wayne Williams for Pontyberem.
Within two minutes of the restart Johnny Morgan typically sliced through from his full back berth to score an unconverted try and after Jack Guerreiro had replaced Mark Heywood he benefitted from good work by Maritz Neumann and Scott James to claim two tries, both converted by Sutton, with Pontyberem only try from replacement Ryan Morgan sandwiched neatly in between.
It was appropriate that Sutton should round off the scoring with a try and conversion to take Tenby past 50 points – and then came that sought-after moment when their cut-glass trophy was presented to skipper Hansford by Gordon Eynon, of the Welsh Rugby Union, when the celebrations began!
Tenby United: Johnny Morgan: Mark Heywood (Jack Guerreiro); Scott James; Mauritz Neumann; Jordan Asparassa: Ashley Sutton; Matthew Morgan: Rob Luly; Dan Allen (Joe Poole); Rob Clarke (Ethan Morgan): Luke Dedman; Mike Davis: Andrew Cooke; Luke Hansford (capt); Barry Parsons.