NEWPORT did enough in the first half to claim what in the end was a hard fought win against a dogged Bargoed side, writes Ian Golden.

Bargoed nearly took first blood in the third minute but Ian Smerdon’s long range penalty kick was just short of the sticks.

However it was Newport who registered the first points of the cold evening when Kyle Tayler made a clean break from 40 metres to ground under the sticks, Matt O’Brien easily converting.

Bargoed hit back on 15 minutes. After winning two successive penalties, Matthew Lewis converted the latter.

Newport kept up the pressure and a fine passing move ended up with Elliot Frewen being sent over in the corner for their second try. O’Brien’s conversion attempt was wide.

Looking for the bonus point, the Black and Ambers kept up the pressure. Kicking for the corner on a penalty, they were rewarded when hooker Henry Palmer dived over.

O’Brien converted before adding a penalty goal just before the break to put Newport 22-3 up.

The home side came out storming in the second half and Newport were caught napping when Bargoed got an early try on the board through Lewis Bowden with Matthew Lewis converting.

However they couldn’t capitalise on this as Newport held firm in a second half dominated by errors. O’Brien missed an opportunity to give his side a two-try cushion, his 35 metre penalty sailing wide.

When Bargoed’s James Pizey was sent to the bin for a repeat offence, it looked to be the end of his side’s hopes to get anything out of this battle, but Geraint Clarke was having none of that.

His clean break put Bargoed back into the game with try under the sticks, James Hallett converting to put them five points behind.

Newport sealed things in the final minute with a long range Haydn Simons penalty.

Scorers: Bargoed – Tries: L Bowden, G Clarke; Cons: M Lewis, J Hallett; Pen: M Lewis.

Newport – Tries: K Tayler, E Frewen, H Palmer; Cons: M O’Brien (2); Pens: M O’Brien, H Simons.