Newport know that they will be up against a Pontypridd team full of confidence after they earned a win against Ebbw Vale last weekend. To come away from Eugene Cross Park with a victory will have put Ponty right back on track after they lost their first game at home to Bedwas. Although they have a few new faces in their squad, coach Justin Burnell seems to have moulded his players into a winning outfit.
The Black & Ambers probably would have preferred to face a different side on Friday as wins against the Sardis Road outfit have been hard to come by over the last few seasons. But there are no easy games in the Eastern half of the league and the players know that. After this game it’s Ebbw Vale away and then Merthyr away and the squad strength will be severely tested. The coaching team has been pleased by the way the players have accepted that mistakes were made in the last two games and by their determination to eliminate these errors and get back to winning ways.
John Lavender and Henry Palmer start at loose-head and hooker with last season's captain, Adam Brown coming into the second row in place of the injured James Little. Morgan Burgess gets a start in his usual position in the back row after impressing at Bedwas when he came on in the second row. Ryan James starts at 9 alongside Matt O'Brien at 10. The three-quarters are unchanged but Hayden Simons plays at 15 after Geraint O'Driscoll suffered a strain in training.
Newport: John Lavender, Henry Palmer, Garin Harris, Adam Brown, Joe Bartlett, Morgan Burgess, Kyle Tayler, Rhys Jenkins (c), Ryan James, Matt O'Brien, Harri Lang, Tom Pascoe, Jon Morris, Wes Cunliffe, Hayden Simons.
Replacements: Will Evans, Nick Boyce, Evan Whitson, Alex Everett, Rhys Cresswell, Owen Davies, A N Other, Adam Sabri
Referee: Rhys Thomas
AR1: Tom Spurrier
AR2: Gerwyn Taylor
Kick Off: 7:30 PM