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Last Updated: Saturday, 5 April, 2003, 13:15 GMT 14:15 UK
Nabaro buckles Steelmen
Principality Cup quarter-final
Newport wing Luke Nabaro claimed a hat-trick of tries
Ebbw Vale (13) 20
Tries: Meenan, Shelbourne. Cons: Shelbourne 2. Pen: Shelbourne. DG: Shelbourne.
Newport (12) 41
Tries: Nabaro 3, Forster 2, Snow. Cons: Montgomery 4. Pen: Montgomery.
Att: 4,000
Luke Nabaro scored a hat-trick of tries as Newport overwhelmed Gwent rivals Ebbw Vale to ease into the semi-finals of the Principality Cup, where they will meet Bridgend.

Flanker Jason Forster scored two tries and South African star Percy Montgomery kicked 11 points at Eugene Cross Park.

The Black and Ambers recorded their seventh successive win over their neighbours, who they will merge with as one of Wales' five new regional entities for cross-border matches next season.

Newport trailed 13-12 at half-time, but they hit Vale with 24 points in a 12-minutes spell at the start of the second half.

Vale shot into a seventh-minute lead when fly-half Scott Mitchell chipped over the top and fullback Mark Meenan pounced for a try, which Bryan Shelbourne converted.

But Newport hit back when Nabaro stormed down the touch-line and beat off several tackles for a superb solo try.

Shelbourne replied with a penalty, but Nabaro scored another great try after Shane Howarth, Forster and Paul Young had all handled, with Montgomery's conversion giving Newport the lead.

We're still not playing the full 80 minutes
Newport skipper Simon Raiwalui

But it didn't last long as a smart Meenan drop-goal edged the Steelmen back ahead at the interval.

Newport swarmed all over their rivals at the start of the second half and Forster barged across after a strong run by Jonathan Pritchard.

Montgomery landed a 53-yard penalty to stretch Newport's lead, before Nabaro grabbed a second try which Montgomery converted to put Newport out of sight.

It was almost all Newport after that and Forster swept across for his second try, converted from the touch-line by Montgomery.

Popular prop Rod Snow grabbed Newport's sixth try, before Shelbourne got a injury-time consolation try and conversion for well-beaten Vale.

Ebbw Vale: M Meenan; G Betts, N Wakley, P Matthews, A Bevan; S Mitchell, B Shelbourne; A Black, L Phillips (capt), M Jones, O Booyse, P Sidoli, R Williams, T Morris, K Tuipolotu.
Replacements: M Ridley, A Takarangi, P Jones, J Evans, C Billen, W Thomas, E Bingham.

Newport: P Montgomery; A Cadwallader, J Jones-Hughes, J Pritchard, L Nabaro; S Howarth, D Llewellyn; R Snow, P Young, C Anthony, S Raiwalui, I Gough, M Veater, J Forster, S Ojomoh.
Replacements: A Garvey, J Richards, A Powell, R Jones, L Lane, J Strange.

Ref: Nigel H Williams (Bryncoch).

Newport skipper Simon Raiwalui
"Bridgend will make for an exciting semi-final"

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