A THREAT to Newport’s bid for a top-six finish in the Principality Premiership stand in their way tonight when they face Aberavon at the Talbot Athletic Ground (kick-off 7.15pm).

The Wizards themselves will want to end the campaign in the first half-a-dozen places and are just two points behind Newport, who lie sixth with 11 matches of their season to go.

Aberavon look like being Newport’s biggest threat as the next team in the standings, Carmarthen Quins, are eight points off Craig Warlow’s men and have also played more games than anyone else.

Newport’s Rodney Parade clash with Llanelli last weekend was postponed due to the wintry conditions – it has been rearranged for Friday, February 22 – while Aberavon’s trip to Llandovery went the same way.

After three matches without a win, Newport would have been disappointed to see their fixture called off, denying them the chance to solidify their position.

It’s three weeks since Aberavon last had a run-out, and what a performance it was in sinking reigning champions and current leaders Merthyr 16-7.

That had come on the back of successive losses, to Pontypridd and Merthyr, the latter in the WRU National Cup.

Victory for the Wizards this evening would see them leapfrog Newport into sixth and complete a league double over the Black and Ambers.

More than 70 points were scored at Rodney Parade back in October when Aberavon withstood a late comeback by Newport to record a 38-35 success.

They stormed into a 21-5 lead inside the first quarter and had extended that to 38-18 with time running out.

However, Will Evans, Tom Lucas and Geraint O’Driscoll scored tries in the closing stages to give Newport hope of completing a remarkable turnaround, but the Wizards clung on.