Pontypridd 22 Sale Sharks 25
Dan Harris returned to his roots to break Pontypridd hearts as Sale carried off the European Parker Pen Shield in Oxford Harris came off the bench to win the day for the Sharks with a try nine minutes from time It capped a remarkable comeback for the Sharks who trailed Ponty 15-3 at half time.
But if the first half belonged to Ponty, the second was very much Sale's.Ponty made the best possible start to this highly charged occasion at the Kassam Stadium.
Around 12000 people flocked to the new-look stadium in the heart of student country - a record crowd for the state of the wonderful arena.And it was the 800 or so Ponty fans who were cheering their hearts out when Brett Davey stepped up to convert a second minute penalty when Sale were caught stamping at a ruck. Fly half Ceri Sweeney doubled that advantage with a drop goal four minutes
later and it was 9-0 on 13 minutes when Davey popped over his second penalty of the afternoon.
Charlie Hodgson, who finished with 10 points to his name pulled back three points with his first of two penalties but Davey made no mistake with his kick on 26 minutes as Ponty turned the screw.
Sale were finding it difficult to compete with a rampant Ponty pack and their plight was certainly hindered when Kevin Yates was yellow carded for tipping Brett Cockbain in the line out.
Davey kicked a fourth penalty eight minutes before the break and that was how the side's turned around.
With the wind behind them, Sale picked up the pace after the break and Hodgson's penalty on 42 minutes put Sale within nine points at 15-6. That was effectively the turning point as from that moment, the Manchester side took control.
Martin Shaw cut through to score his side's first try and though Hodgson missed that conversion, he was spot on with his next after Steve Hanley rounded the Ponty cover to score.
Pontypridd looked somewhat shell-shocked by the double whammy although on 67 minutes they struck back with a try that redressed the balance once again.
Choosing to kick a penalty to touch, they reaped the rewards when a rolling maul from the ensuing line out saw Mefin Davies bundled over for a try that Ponty converted through the reliable boot of Davey.
The Ponty masses went wild but after Harris was introduced 10 minutes from time, the centre was sent through a gaping hole in the Ponty defence to score the conclusive try that Hodgson duly improved.
It was a stunning occasion and a final to befit the competition.
Sale - Tries: M Shaw, S Hanley,
D Harris. Cons: C Hodgson (2).
Pens: C Hodgson (2).
Pontypridd - Try: M Davies.
Con: B Davey. Pens: B Davey (4).
Drop goal: C Sweeney.
The Wales U18 squad spent an emotional day in the drug-riddled townnship of Hout Bay. Hout Bay Warriors President Fred Johannes said the visit was 'the talk of the town' and will dream about the day everyday for the rest of his life.
RGC 1404's new head coach Mark Jones is hoping to build 'something special' in north Wales and is already looking forward to the development region participating in the Principality Premiership for the very first time.
A joint venture between the WRU and Admiral saw hundreds of children enjoy the Admiral Festival of Rugby held at the National Centre of Excellence at the weekend where Welsh internationals Sam Warburton, Scott Williams and Rob Evans were in attendance.
Wll Jones leads Wales U18s into battle this afternoon against Italy where the Welsh side will be seeking to bounce back from their narrow defeat to SA Schools in their opening clash of the U19 International Series
All four regions attended a successful training camp staged last weekend at the WRU National Centre of Excellence. It was a chance for new Wales Women's head coach Rowland Phillips to deliver his key messages to players and coaches as he prepares for the new season.
Wales U18 Team Manager Gethin Watts believes the next couple of weeks will be 'extremely beneficial' to the future of Welsh rugby as his side prepare to take part in the Under 19 International Series being staged in South Africa.
The WRU is searching for 12 new rugby development apprentices following a successful first year of its WRU Coach Core programme. Craig Duncan and Jess Hancock have flourished in the first year of the programme which has given them a real direction in their lives.
The WRU signed TV comedian Rhod Gilbert up to a 'Coaching Children Level 1' course before letting him loose on an U8s side at Whitland Junior Borderers - we went behind the scenes to film the making of 'Rhod Gilbert's Work Experience' see the results here.
Llandovery are aiming to make it three titles in a row in this year's Foster's National 7s being held at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on Sunday 28 August. Drovers assistant coach Simon Davies and Lee Rees assess their sides chances
A pioneering strength and conditioning programme has been delivered to more than 8000 boys and girls at hub schools throughout Wales this season, helping to develop stronger, more flexible athletes for rugby and other sports.
The Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series returns to the BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on July 22nd when all four Welsh regions go head to head. Scarlets skills coach Dai Flanagan and Blues Elite Performance Pathway Manager Richard Hodges along with current Welsh squad members were at the launch of this season's event