HOOKER Darren Hughes and flanker Scott Matthews shared Pontypool's player of the season award as the WRU National Championship winners toasted their second successive invincible league campaign, writes Ray Ruddick.

Pooler suffered play-off heartbreak against Llanelli that means they missed out on promotion to the Premiership, but still had a remarkable campaign that saw them win all 22 games on their way to a third title on the spin, plus they made it to the semi-finals of the WRU National Cup for the first time since 1991.

Lock Curtis Gregory won the supporters' and players' player of the year awards, centre Joel Mahoney was named as most promising player and lock Danny Hodge won an honour from the sponsors.

Flanker Rob Nash won the captain's award while fly-half/centre Kieran Meek and wing Lloyd Lewis were recognised for being highest points scorer and top try scorer respectively.

Front rower Jamie Jeune was honoured for passing 250 appearances while Meek, prop Aaron Coundley, fly-half Matthew Jones and scrum-half Martin Luckwell passed their half-centuries.

The 28 players who attended were presented with their medals before the prestigious clubman of the season, now called the chairman's award in memory of Barrie Calder-Matthews, went to Peter Jackson.

Jackson has been baggage man for the club for over 40 years and his fellow kit man for most of that time was his great friend, the late Terry 'Tiger' Simons, who passed away in October.

He attends almost every training session and every match, preparing the kit for the players, and has been rewarded for his dedication and commitment to the club.

The dinner was attended by around 200 guests and was compered by chairman Peter Jeffreys.

Guest speakers were former Pooler legends John Perkins and Terry Cobner, who had their audience laughing with some humorous stories from their playing days.

Also in attendance were two-thirds of the famous Pontypool front row, club president Graham Price and Tony 'Charlie' Faulkner, former Pooler and Wales hooker Nigel Meek and Pontypool's record points scorer, with over 3,500 points, former Wales B full back Peter Lewis.