Kynes leads Ebbw Vale to Premiership glory

They had to do it the hard way, but Ebbw Vale went one better than last season by stripping Pontypridd of their title at Sardis Road and becoming crowned Principality Premiership champions.

Having travelled to the home of the SSE Swalec Cup winners, Llandovery, in the semi-final, the Steelmen had to return to the 'House of Pain' for the second season in a row for the final to take on a Pontypridd side chasing a record fifth successive title.

But the Premiership player of the season, Ronny Kynes, led the charge as he crossed for two of his side's five tries in a comprehensive 38-12 triumph that gave Ebbw Vale their first Welsh title since they were crowned the Unofficial Welsh Club Champions for the fourth time in 1959/60.

Proud Pontypridd were looking to go one better than Neath's four Premiership titles in a row by adding the title to the Foster's Challenge Cup they won by beating Bedwas earlier in the season. They earned the right to host the final after finishing on top of the table at the end of the regular campaign.

But Ebbw Vale arrived with revenge in mind after last season's defeat at the same venue - and looking to make it a hat-trick of wins over the perennial standard bearers of Premiership rugby. The visitors pack got on top and the home side simply had no answer to their power.

"To come here and win the title against a very good side who have won the last four titles. To win in the manner that we did at Sardis Road is simply fantastic," admitted Ebbw Vale head coach Nigel Davies.

"The team spirit is second to none within this squad and is as good as anywhere I have been involved in. That is what gets you across the line.

"The players have worked extremely hard for each other, they show tremendous heart and spirit and their work rate and work ethic is phenomenal. That was shown in the first half when we just had to defend - the boys just kept on making their tackles and left Ponty with nowhere to go."

"There was a lot of experience in the side having been to last season's final and we used all of that momentum to get us over the line. This win will mean everything to the players, but also to the Ebbw Vale fans, who have been fantastic all season."

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