A REVITALISED Newport will be looking to continue their rich vein of form when they travel to high flying Carmarthen Quins tonight (kick-off 7.30pm), writes Iwan Gabe Davies.
The Black and Ambers look for a hat trick of victories after smashing Bridgend 46-24 in a bonus point win away and then crushing Neath 20-3 at Rodney Parade last week.
Their comprehensive win over the stuggling Welsh All Blacks six days ago did much to ease their relegation fears, the prospect of dropping down to the Swalec Championship almost certainly dispelled.
Newport head coach Sven Cronk was delighted with his troops for the way they performed, especially when the spectre of still being embroiled in a basement dogfight loomed large.
“Last weekend’s win was very pleasing in what was a big pressure game for us because we really did come up trumps,” he said.
The Black and Ambers can do their big Gwent rivals Cross Keys a real favour tonight by beating a Quins side who are second in the Principality Premiership, ten points ahead of the Pandy Park team in fifth place.
And Cronk wants his side to improve on their success over Neath, urging his men to be more ruthless when scoring opportunities arise.
They scored two tries in their most recent triumph, but were unlucky not to score a hatful more.
“It was a good performance last week but, when we looked back, we should have got a bonus point win,” he said.
“Carmarthen is a tough place to go but we go there with plenty of confidence and look to be more clinical.”
Newport were unfortunate not to beat Quins back in late November, going down to an agonising 23-21 defeat at Rodney Parade.
Tonight, will be without two Wales Under-20s players in centre Tyler Morgan and back row forward Ollie Griffiths, on duty for the clash with Scotland in Colwyn Bay.
But their age grade national squad colleagues, wing Ashton Hewitt and fly-half Ethan Davies, are both available.
There is bad news for the Black and Ambers in that back rower Rhys Jenkins is out for the rest of the season with a torn bicep, sustained in the win over Neath.
“It’s a real shame for him,” Cronk said. “He hasn’t had much luck with injuries and was playing really well last week.
“Rhys will be out for between eight to ten weeks and will have an operation on Monday.”