Barbarians lift the Dragons Athletic League trophy

Newport HSOB Expendables RFC 19 Bedwas Barbarians 34

Dragons Athletic League, Saturday 20 April 2024

Match report by Dean Picton, photography by Angela Brideaux.


The Barbarians went into this weekend knowing a bonus point win would crown themselves League Champions. A sunny afternoon and perfect conditions set the scene for a great match, and we were not disappointed.


 The game kicked off with a noted NHSOB changed team from their last encounter constantly threatening the Barbarians.

Harvey Stroud picked up the ball from the halfway line, and off he went like a rocket, side stepping two players to sprint fifty metres to score a memorable try which Rees-Zammit himself would have been proud of.

Owen Thomas converted the try.


 NHSOB came straight back and scored a forward based powerful try which was again converted.

 Again, Bedwas went on the attack and were rewarded with a great try from fullback Saul Down which again was converted by Owen Thomas.


 The Barbarians were under severe pressure for a large part of the first half whereby only sheer guts, determination and tackling technique kept them ahead. The wall finally broke and NHSOB scored a great try which was converted, and half time arrived with the scores locked at 14-14.


 Three changes were adopted from the start of the half with Harry Rees, Arran Attwood and Patrick Shaw-Williams being added. The half time team talk was to up the tempo and stay disciplined… which started to work with an immediate try by inform flanker, Logan Hughes which was unconverted.


 Bedwas were now in top gear and a fantastic run by no 8, Alex Kawulok made Bedwas breathe a sigh of relief as this was the fourth try and potential bonus point.  


Further pressure led to Owen Thomas kicking a penalty.


 A great move saw the Baa Baa’s move the ball along the backline whereby it fell into captain, Tyler Picton’s hands to force his way over the tryline only for the referee to disallow as he believed it was short of the line. If only for VAR!


 Bedwas scored again through a penalty try following unsporting play by NHSOB which stopped an almost certain try by foul play.

 NHSOB did not give up and scored a great team effort try which was unconverted.

 On a disappointing note, Logan Hughes was taken out in a lineout which meant he had to be carried off but his ball playing ethics made him an easy man of the match.


The final nail on the coffin was a great penalty kick by Owen Thomas.


 The final whistle came, and the place went mad.


Bedwas Barbarians had done it! League Champions for the second year running. The trophy was presented by Gwyn Lloyd (Dragons League) to captain Tyler Picton who proudly held up the Cup and League Champions 2023-24.


The Barbarians host Blackwood Griffins in the play-off for the Dragons Athletic Cup on Saturday 27 April, kick-off 2-30pm. The winners will compete in the final at Rodney Parade, Newport on Tuesday 14th May 2024.