PLAYING this home tie in the alien environs of Cardiff Arms Park, an understrength Newport side were no match for their opponents as they were dumped unceremoniously out of the National Cup, writes Peter Hughes.

It was the visitors who opened the scoring in just the fourth minute with a try for scrum half Efan Jones, stand off Billy McBride adding the extra points. With much of the play taking place in the Newport 22, McBryde extended his side’s lead with a 17th minute penalty.

Newport’s first attacking opportunity of the game came soon afterwards, the Black and Ambers going patiently through the phases to get within 7 metres of the RGC line before they surrendered possession through a handling error.

Play quickly moved back to the other end of the field where a kick through from full back Dion Jones set up wing Harri Evans for the North Wales side’s second try. Less than two minutes later, Evans was touching down again following a move which had started in the RGC half.

RGC’s fourth try of the game came with less than half an hour of the game gone, centre and co-captain Tom Hughes touching down.

Newport got on the scoreboard themselves in the 33rd minute as skipper Geraint O’Driscoll crossed underneath the posts. Thereafter Newport showed a little more in the way of enterprise but the half ended with them camped on their own try line once again and the score 27 – 7 in favour of the visitors.

The second half opened as the first concluded, a perfectly weighted chip ahead from McBryde gathered by Tom Hughes who got within 10m of the Newport try line before wing Iolo Evans touched down. The Colwyn Bay based side kept the scoreboard ticking over with a further McBryde penalty in the 52nd minute.

As the game approached the hour mark, Newport battled their way out of their own 22 for No 8 Matthew Reed to score his side’s second try. They battled hard in the remaining minutes of the game in their effort to further narrow the gap and in the 79th minute a combined forward effort set up replacement prop Dan Preece to touch down in the corner and provide some small consolation for his side and the small group of fans who had made the trip to Cardiff.

Scorers: Newport – Tries: G O’Driscoll (33), M Reed (58) D Preece (79). Con: H Simons (33).

RGC 1404 - Tries: E Jones (4); H Evans (21, 23) T Hughes (27) I Evans (42). Cons: B McBryde (4, 23) Pens: B McBryde (17, 52).

Newport: D Richards, A Sabri I Burgwin 68), H Palmer, G O’Driscoll (capt), A Evans (C Smith 24), H Simons, G Watkins, L Smout (D Preece 47), H Palmer (W Evans 47), J Williams (T Piper 47), R Creswell, D Partridge, C Williams (M Burgess 52), J Reid, M Reed (J Bartlett 68).

RGC: D Jones (K Martin 72), I Evans, T Hughes (co-capt), D Cross (D Jones 22), H Evans, B McBryde, E Jones (N Butterworth 60), J Simpson (C Reynolds 68), E Yardley (co-capt) (G Roberts 52), S Wainwright (J Scott 60), B Jones, A Williams, W Bryan (I Rowlands 67), M Parry (R Williams 40), T Grey Referee: Mr Gareth Newman (WRU).