This match was in aid of the Ken Jones Memorial Fund and played at a damp Recreation ground with at times threatening mist but the conditions did not spoil the match and the pitch was in good condition.
It was a tough first half for Newport who had to defend against a spirited Blaenavon side who scrummaged effectively and kicked shrewdly to the corners playing down the slope.
It was 0-0 at HT but in 2nd half with Scott Sneddon and Tom Hancock switching their 15 and 10 positions and Newport coming out of the blocks quickly they were soon in front as new centre Will Richards intercepted after 30 secs and ran in for Sneddon to convert. On the 4th minute Richards was over again and this time Hancock converted. Pressure on their line resulted in Blaenavon conceding a penalty try on 60 mins – converted by Sneddon. Due to Blaenavon front row injuries scrums went to passive. Hard working Adam Frampton galloped over on 67 mins for Hancock to convert and the referee blew up on 77 mins.
It was an entertaining game and resulted in £600 being raised to go towards the proposed statue of Ken Jones in the town. Ken is probably Blaenavon’s most famous rugby son – born in 1921. He played 294 games for Newport RFC 1946-1958 scoring 147 tries and was captain in. 1950/1 and 1953/4. He played 44 times for Wales including an incredible 43 consecutive and was an Olympic sprinter gaining a silver medal in 1948.
Newport : S Sneddon, W Hodnett, W Richards, S Regan (A Davies 49), O Broad, T Hancock, A Quick (J Leadbeater 49), J Lavender (D Pattison 55), R Prosser (A Brown 49), J Jones, A Frampton, R Jones (S Waldron 49), R Coombs (capt), C Townsend, C Everett ( J Skinner 51). Reps not used : G O’Driscoll, A Awcock.
Scorers : W Richards 2t (41,44mins), Pen Try 60mins), A Frampton try 67mins and S Sneddon 2c, T Hancock 2c.
Half Time 41 mins: Will Richards Try 0-5; 41 mins: Scott Sneddon Conversion 0-7; 44 mins: Will Richards Try 0-12; 45 mins: Tom Hancock Conversion 0-14; 60 mins: 0-19; 61 mins: Scott Sneddon Conversion 0-21; 67 mins: Adam Frampton Try 0-26; 68 mins: Tom Hancock Conversion 0-28