Rory Budina's score failed to secure a win for Bedwas
Neath maintained their recent impressive form with a narrow home win over Bedwas on Saturday.
A Ryan Evans try in the second half proved vital as Neath took the spoils, emerging with a 29-27 win from what was a hard fought encounter.
The visitors started brightly and had two early penalty chances. The first of these appeared to bisect the posts but the match officials thought otherwise and it was not allowed. Bedwas were not to be denied for long however and Lewis Hudd won a race to the line to touch down in the right hand corner. Lewis Robling converted from wide out.
Ten minutes later Bedwas increased their lead through an excellent Rory Budina try, the winger crossing under the sticks after a mazy run saw him bump off several defenders in the process. Robling again added the conversion.
Neath fought back though and after a series of scrums close to the Bedwas line, they were awarded a penalty try after the referee lost patience with the visitors' attempts to defend their line. Dai Langdon added the extras and with half time approaching, the home side grabbed a second try from a cleverly worked line out, scrum half Luc Jones darting over. Langdon's conversion drifted wide.
Neath drew first blood in the second half via a Dean Cummins penalty.
Bedwas came back strongly and Robling and Matthew Pewtner combined to put the former in for a try, the same player adding the conversion.
Neath continued to press before Bedwas hit the self destruct button. Phill Sargent and Ian George were both yellow carded within 60 seconds leaving the remaining 13 Bedwas players to defend like Trojans. Robling added a penalty after 71 minutes to increase the Bedwas lead to 10 points but the pressure finally told as Neath earnt a second penalty try just before the visitors returned to a full 15.
Langdon successfully converted but Bedwas still led by three points going into injury time.
And although it looked like they would hold on, Evans' try in the 10th minute of added time saw Neath secure their sixth win in seven games.
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.