Porthmadog ended 2023 with a first win of the current season in a league and North Wales Cup double header.

Rhyl 2nds 16 Porthmadog 19, Admiral National League 1 North and North Wales Cup

The Harbourmen’s fortunes have not been as promising this season as it was in the last and Port have been winless since the season started in September.

Clubs dropping out of the league have hampered momentum and the team has found it difficult to compete in what is proving to be a disjointed season and went into Saturday’s game at the foot of the table after playing only four games.

However, the team travelled to Rhyl to play their second team with optimism as it was a bottom of the table clash which also counted as a North Wales Cup eliminator round.

The game started evenly, and it was Rhyl who took advantage with an early penalty.

Port’s ill-discipline cost them dearly as they went down to 13 players following two players getting sent to the bin within minutes of each other. The away side held strong however as Rhyl failed to penetrate a strong defensive line.

Before the game broke for the half, Caron Jones cut through the home side’s defence for a nice score in the corner with Ciron Price converting in difficult conditions. 3-7 to Port at the break.

The second half started like the second with Port losing the ref to ill-discipline and struggling to adapt to this season’s new tackling laws. Rhyl countered with a converted try before adding two more penalties from the boot to take the score to 16-7 into the last quarter.

Port however dug deep with two tries by Ben Humphreys and Ioan Evans in the last 10 minutes with Ciron Price converting one out of two from the sideline to take it to 16-19 with 5 minutes to play.

Rhyl won a penalty on Port’s 22 and decided to sacrifice their cup run (if score remained equal the away side progresses) and attempted a kick at the posts.

The kick skimmed the post and was missed, Port held their breath with a 22 drop and a messy line-out which was tackled into touch meant they came out victorious.