Both touchlines were packed for this eagerly awaited cup semi final. Cardiff asserted themselves early on with their pack providing quick ruck ball and within a minute they moved the ball blind to release full back James Williams to score under the posts. Converted by Dafydd Manley. From the kick off Cardiff again tried to move blind but the excellent Newport defence forced a Cardiff error and the Newport winger did not need a second invitation to pick up and run in from 20 yards out. From the restart, further pressure from the Newport side allowed the ball to be moved freely along the back line. Although Cardiff displayed a resilient defence, Newport capitalized on a very well worked overlap to make the score 12 - 7 to Newport at halftime.
With Newport in control, and the larger Cardiff pack under pressure in the heat a tactical change was needed. Highly effective and well executed pick and drives forced Newport to defend around the blind side, and when the home side pack began to struggle the back line were forced to commit to defend the fringes. Cardiff saw the opportunity to spread the ball wide and Regan Mahony was put into space to score out wide, making the scores level at 12 points a piece.
With Newport again trying to run the ball from deep, a misjudged bounce was picked up by Cardiff wing Rafel Actie who showed his pace to race in and secure a win for Cardiff. Final score Cardiff 17 - Newport 12. A game worthy of any final. Full credit to both sides for an outstanding game of rugby.
Cardiff will now face Swansea in the DC Thomas Cup final
Your Christmas starts here! The countdown is on to the festive season as we face our last Guinness PRO12 fixture at home this year when we entertain league leaders Connacht Rugby at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park - and you can be part of the big match action!
Teenage Cancer Trust will be collecting for valuable funds at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on Saturday afternoon ahead of our British & Irish Cup fixture with Nottingham Rugby (kick-off 2.30pm). Ahead of the game, we take a closer look at the charity and discover how they are making a difference...
Cardiff Blues suffered a first defeat of the season in the European Rugby Challenge Cup as a second half burst of tries from Harlequins saw the English side claim victory at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park.