Neath 22 Ebbw Vale 15
While their eighth win of the season moves the side to within four points of top of the table Cardiff, the Neath youngsters had to dig deep into their resolve to overcome a competitive visiting outfit. The victory was only secured at full time.
After a bright start by the Gnoll youngsters and a flowing move which had taken play close to the visitors line, Wales U'21s prop Adam Jones was on hand to finish off a well rehearsed line-out move. Fly half Aled Davies added the conversion.
Ebbw Vale fly half Richard Jenkins slotted over a penalty midway through the first half and then duly added a conversion after the Visiting centre Matthew Griffiths showed excellent skill to control a charge down and secure an opening try.
Neath full back Peter Thomas proved strong in defense and also demonstrated excellent vision to take play close to the visitors line with a measured kick but the Gwent side were equally organised in defense to retain their 10pts to 7 interval lead.
The scores were levelled by a Davies penalty but despite the urgency shown by scrum half Gareth James, the Gnoll side lacked the creativity to unlock the visitors defense. The Neath scrum began to dominate and following a strike against the head, referee Matthew Aplin (Bryncoch) awarded a penalty try.
Davies once again found the target to convert but uncharacteristically for Neath, they failed to build upon their lead and it was the visitors who set up a tense finale when centre Griffiths once again made the most of a sloppy Neath defense to claim his brace of tries. However Jenkins' conversion attempt went wide of the upright which if successful would have levelled the scores.
Neath built up a period of intense pressure and on the final whistle centre Craig Smith crashed through to secure the vital win. Davies failed with the conversion but the win followed up the 25pts to 16 win at Eugene Cross Park earlier in the season and completed a hat trick of home wins in as many weeks.
Meet the members of the WRU's inaugural Youth Board - after an online selection process which saw a host of high calibre candidates submit video applications the WRU has made its first 15 appointments.The board is made up of individuals aged between 16 and 21, and will meet for the first time at Principality Stadium on Monday 15th February.
The Wales Women's team headed to Dare Valley Country Park on a team bonding exercise as the entire squad got together for the very first time in preparation for this season's Six Nations championship which kicks off on Saturday with a clash against defending champions Ireland, in Donnybrook.
Wales Head Coach Warren Gatland discusses his team selection for the opening round of the RBS 6 Nations where he leads his side against Ireland, on Sunday. As WRU TV's Luke Brodley discovers, Gatland is fully aware of the challenges the defending champions pose
WRUTV caught up with Wales Women captain Rachel Taylor at the RBS 6 Nations launch and how a good crowd really helps boost the girls performance. Tickets for all three Women's home games at The Gnoll, Neath are available from www.wru.wales/tickets