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Byron lords it over Newbridge.

PONTYPOOL weathered a nervous first half to account for a gutsy Newbridge side at the Welfare Ground.

Chief architect in their victory was former Ebbw Vale, Llanelli and Gloucester fly-half Byron Hayward, who contributed a personal tally of 22 points.

However Newbridge looked the stronger outfit in the opening half. The home side harassed Pontypool into conceding possession on numerous occasions. With it went their discipline, allowing Jason Williams to convert five penalties.

A try after 31 minutes from centre Jonathan Hawker helped Pontypool regain their composure before Hayward took the game by the scruff of the neck.

He seemed a class apart from the other players, constantly probing the Newbridge defence, creating and finding gaps for himself and others. The result of Hayward's display was 30 second half points which went unanswered.

Hayward danced through a static Newbridge defence for Pooler's second try and they increased their lead through a penalty try and a fine effort from winger Lenny Woodard. Hayward converted all Pooler's tries and added two 45-metre penalties to cement Pooler's victory.
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Publication:Wales On Sunday (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Sep 9, 2001
Words:175
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