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Jarvis pleased with improved second-half display

Sunday 12th February 2023

Matthew Jarvis feels Pooler added a clinical edge to their finishing in the second half as they enjoyed a bonus-point victory over Narberth RFC in the WRU Admiral National Championship.

The hosts edged a fiercely competitive first half with the lead changing hands five times in the opening 40 minutes.

Winger Deon Smith opened the scoring before a Ben Thomas try and five kicked points from Nick Gale put the visitors ahead.

Pontypool came roaring back with centre Pat Lewis going over and Jarvis’ conversion edging them in front.

Two Nick Gale penalties looked enough to send Narberth leading at the break but a late try from Jarvis, which he converted, handed control back to Pooler.

“It was a great read by Owain [Leonard] with the pass and a good line by Dai [Langdon], which created the gap for myself so I can’t take too much credit,” Jarvis said of his try.

It was more one-sided after the break with Pontypool pressure resulting in tries for captain Scott Matthews, flanker Mike Herbert, second row Garin Price, replacement Amosa Nove and winger Mathew Powell. Jarvis added a further three conversions with Langdon chipping in with two.

Thomas did manage to bag a second for Narberth but a dominant display after the break ensured Pooler were already out of sight.

“I think we looked after the ball a lot more and were far more clinical in their 22,” explained Jarvis, who bagged 15 points on the day.

“Still we have plenty to work on and in fairness to Narberth they chucked everything at us in the first half and could easily have gone in ahead.

Fair play to them coming up here on a Six Nations day and they really took it to us in that first half and worked until the final whistle.

“Silly errors and ill-discipline cost us in the first half and we were out of sync slightly but they put us under pressure.

“Second half we went a bit more direct and the driving lineout worked well.”

The rearranged fixture ensured Pooler had the chance to restore their seven-point advantage at the top of the table while continuing the run of games and – in turn – momentum.

Jarvis echoed the thoughts of prop Peter Lloyd that the league should continue during the Six Nations with a slightly altered schedule.

“I think it’s great to be playing at this time of year, it builds momentum and keeps everyone involved rather than having a long break and having to go playing in late May,” added Jarvis.

“Early kick-offs or playing on a Friday night during the Six Nations should be incorporated into the season.”


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