The Welsh All Blacks overcame a 30-minutes delay at the start of the second half as the generator ran out of diesel causing a floodlight failure and the home side themselves ran out of energy against an unrelenting wave of Neath forwards surges.
The Gnoll forwards created two pushover scores as they dominated the scrummage while locks Gavin Evans and Lee Bassett secured a plentiful supply of possession at the line-outs. The fact that the visitors failed to convert possession into points had more to do with some generous refereeing of the offside rule as the visitors found limited space in midfield.
Number eight Gareth Williams opened the scoring rounding off a flowing Ponty attack with an unconverted try, while Neath replied almost immediately as scrum half Gareth James collected his first try of the evening benefitting from a superb scrummage lead by the Neath front row trio of Paul James, Adam Matthews and Adam Jones.
Fly half Mike Thomas restored the home sides lead only for Dylan Pugh to level the scores midway through the first half. Any signs of a repeat half century of points performance as shown against Swansea in the previous round were not visible at Sardis Road even before the temporary gloom as Neath fell behind to a 15pts to 8 after Thomas scored a converted try at the posts.
After a hurried visit to the local garage and lights restored, Neath firstly levelled the scores after prop Paul James capitalised fully on the sinbinning of Thomas to crash over for a try.
While Ponty had their moments, the visitors took the lead for the first time in the match as scrum half James collected his second try at the base of another rapidly advancing Neath scrum. Pugh, growing in statue as the season progresses, added both conversions.
Left wing James Watkins seized on a Neath defensive error to score wide out and while the try went unconverted with Thomas missing all his second half attempts at goal, Pugh settled the visitors nerves with his second penalty of the evening to set up a final against the winners of friday evenings clash between Cardiff and Llanelli.
Wales reached their first semi-final since 2013 in the opening round of this season's HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in Dubai. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie recaps on what proved to be an eventful tournament
Wales and Ospreys back row James King, who came through the North Wales age grade system, nominated North Wales Regional Community Rugby Manager Marc Roberts, in the WRU's 'Diolch' initiative where squad players thanked those who played a part in their rise to the top.
Beating Merthyr has boosted Carmarthen Quins hopes of reaching a top eight spot in the Principality Premiership. Quins captain Haydn Pugh is delighted with his team's progress and is determined that everyone from the Under 6s through to the senior team, enjoys the ride.
When the Wales squad were asked to nominate individuals who played a big part in their early playing days, Wales and Dragons full back and wing Hallam Amos thought of his former Monmouth School rugby coach John Bevan.
Sam Cross and Luke Treharne have been named as co-captains of the Wales Sevens side as head coach Gareth Williams names his 12-man squad to play in the first leg of the HSBC World Series in Dubai next weekend.
Bedwas head coach Steve Law and players Nicky Griffiths and Alun Rees extol the virtues of the close knit club as they prepare to host third place RGC 1404 - who are one place head of them on the Principality Premiership points table - on Saturday.
Many of the Wales squad have said Diolch (thank you) to someone who played an important part in their early playing days by nominating them to be invited to the Wales v South Africa match. One person, Gowerton Comprehensive geography teacher Mr Dean Mason was nominated by two of his former pupils, Dan Biggar and Sam Davies.
The second WRU disability rugby pilot has been delivered, this time in Caerphilly schools, culminating in a festival at the Caerphilly Centre of Sporting Excellence, Ystrad Mynach tomorrow. Plans are in place to set up a Disability Rugby Club in Newbridge to provide long-term playing opportunities.
WRU TV: Hear from inside the Wales camp as Neil Jenkins discusses this weekend's clash with South Africa and how the squad are looking to put in a strong performance to round of the 2016 Under Armour Series