Rugby Union: Lewises prove power of Ponty

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The Independent Online
PONTYPRIDD consolidated their position at the top of the Welsh/Scottish League Premier Division and underlined their excellent form with an emphatic 44-10 victory over Glasgow Caledonians at Sardis Road yesterday.

In an entertaining match which brought together two of British rugby's rare success stories from last weekend's Heineken Cup fixtures - Pontypridd had seen off Colomiers and the Caledonians had proved too strong for Leinster - the home side ran in five tries. The wing Geraint O Lewis claimed two of them while the back-row forward Geraint P Lewis, the hooker Andrew Lamerton and the wing Gareth Wyatt also went over. The former Wales fly- half Lee Jarvis converted all five tries to go with the three penalties he also kicked. The Scotland No 8 Gordon Simpson crossed for Caledonians and the boot of their fly-half Tommy Hayes supplied their other points.

Neath bounced back from their Heineken Cup defeat by Edinburgh Reivers at the Gnoll to hammer the bottom club Dunvant 45-10. The home side's two wings, both named Williams, helped themselves to five tries between them, Delme chalking up a hat-trick and Shane bagging a brace. Matthew Pearce contributed the other try while Cerith Rees three conversions and three penalties. Dunvant's sole touchdown, which was converted by Geraint Davies, came from the hooker Craig Hawkins while Simon Daniel landed an early penalty.

Swansea, spectacularly trounced on their Heineken Cup visit to Toulouse last weekend, were far from dominant as they recorded a morale-boosting 24-8 home win over Bridgend. In addition to a penalty try, the Wales hooker Garin Jenkins and lock forward Tyrone Maullin were the All Whites' try-scorers while the kicking duties were shared by Lee Davies and Arwel Thomas.

Worcester remain in charge of Allied Dunbar Premiership Two, but only after being run embarrassingly close by their lowly visitors Orrell. Sateki Tu'ipulotu, the Tongan full-back who moved from Leeds during the summer, scored two of the leaders' tries as they scraped home 35-32. David Slemen, the 21-year-old son of the former England wing Mike Slemen, supplied 20 of Orrell's points.

Second-placed Rotherham kept up the pressure on Worcester with an emphatic 38-6 home victory over Manchester with the former England A scrum-half Dave Scully, now 34, bagging a brace of touchdowns.

Exeter remain fourth despite going down 42-33 at Coventry, whose fly- half Steve Gough contributed 22 points. London Welsh enjoyed a solid 24- 8 win over Moseley at Old Deer Park, Wakefield plunged second-from-bottom Waterloo into deeper gloom with a 44-0 thrashing, and Rugby sprang a 20- 14 surprise away to Henley.

In the Jewson National League, there were two ton-up results which will sadden many of the game's traditionalists. Blackheath, whose excellent official history, The Club by Dave Hammond, has recently been published, added another chapter to this season's catalogue of shame when they lost 103-3 at the League One leaders Otley to remain firmly anchored at the bottom. In League Two South, the once-proud Met Police find themselves in solitary confinement at the foot of the table after their 104-7 defeat away to the leaders Esher. Considerably further down the pecking order, one result could not have provided a greater contrast - the 0-0 draw between Aldermaston and Colerne in Berks, Dorset & Wilts Division Two.

Heriot's FP, the champions, are back at the helm of the BT Scotland Premiership First Division after beating yesterday morning's leaders Glasgow Hawks 25-17 in a hard-fought encounter at Goldenacre. Melrose moved up to third, level on points with the Hawks, after shading Currie 22-20.

The opening Saturday of the AIB Irish League First Division saw the title holders Garryowen launch their campaign with a convincing 38-14 home success over Terenure. Buccaneers got the better of Cork Constitution, 28-15, in the battle between the teams which finished second and third last term.