No score, but an exciting game as reported on 12th December 1881 in the Western Mail:-
"CARDIFF v. NEWPORT.- On Saturday a match was played in the Cardiff Arms Park, Cardiff, between the clubs of Cardiff and Newport. As is usual when these rival teams meet great interest was evinced in the game, and about two thousand spectators were attracted to the field. Cardiff won the toss, and Girling kicked off. The ball was well followed up, and kept in Newport ground, where, after a scrimmage, it was driven in touch. When thrown out a scrimmage was formed, and Cardiff made some further progress. From another scrimmage Newman made a smart run, and passed by mistake to W. D. Phillips, who was collared at the 25 flag. From the scrimmage Cardiff dribbled forward some yards, when some hard fighting ensued in close proximity to the visitors' goal. In the scrimmage Newport had the advantage, and a capital run by one of their number brought the ball to the 25 flag. From a scrimmage Clapp tried to make off with the leather, but was collared, and Barlow, by some clever dodging, gained a few yards for his team. Immediately afterwards Evans and Bridie came into violent collision. The former resumed play after a short rest, but the latter received so severe a knock that he had to leave the field. From a scrimmage in Newport ground, Newman made a good run, and was tackled by W. D. Phillips near the half-way flag. From a scrimmage Arthurs made away with the leather, but was quickly collared. The visitors were, however, kept well in their own territory until the ball was landed by a drop kick into the Cardiff 25. From the scrimmage Purdon tried to run in, but the leather was taken from him by William, who dribbled into neutral ground. From a scrimmage the ball was again kicked forward by Newman, and fell into the hands of W. D. Phillips, who was collared in the home territory. From a scrimmage Arthurs made a clever run, but was pushed in touch; and directly afterwards Spickett carried the leather into the Newport ground, , where a scrimmage was formed. Spickett again secured the ball, and passed it to Norton, who was, however, tackled. After a little passing by Newport, which was without any result, owing to the smart collaring of Cardiff, Williams got the ball, and made a splendid run from neutral ground to within a few feet of the Newport line, where he was thrown just in time to save the goal. This performance well merited the round of applause with which it was recognised by the spectators. Several very tight scrimmages then took place, but Cardiff failed to get in, and were gradually forced back by Newport, who had, however, to exert themselves to the utmost of their strength and skill. Newman made repeated attempts to run, and eventually he dropped the ball into neutral ground, when half-time was called, neither team having scored. The game was re-commenced by Newport. In endeavouring to return the ball Barlow kicked low, but Arthurs made a smart run, landing the ball in touch above the 25 flag. When thrown out Arthurs again escaped with the leather, and was not collared until in Newport ground. Newman then made an unsuccessful attempt to run, and the ball was driven in touch. When thrown out a scrimmage was formed, from which Lyne dribbled back to mid-distance, where he was tackled by W. D. Phillips. Several scrimmages ensued, and Spickett made a capital run into Newport territory, where, on being collared, he passed to W. D. Phillips, who was pushed in touch. From another scrimmage Norton secured the ball, which he dropped into the Newport 25. It was well followed up, and the Newport back was collared in endeavouring to return it. From the scrimmage Spittle tried to run, but was tackled, and the ball was kicked in touch within a few yards from the Newport goal. When thrown out Newport gained a little, and from a scrimmage Newman carried the ball to below the 25 flag. From a kick by Williams the ball fell into the hands of a Newportonian, and was driven in touch in neutral ground. From a scrimmage Arthurs made off, and passed to W. D. Phillips, who, however, lost ground and was thrown in touch near Cardiff 25. The ball was dribbled again into neutral ground, where a scrimmage was formed. Some good running and passing by Newport drove Cardiff once more back on their 25 flag, but a fine run by Williams retrieved the position, and the leather was sent in touch at mid-distance. When thrown out, a Newportonian tried to make off, but was collared in neutral ground. Harding next escaped, but was tackled just below the half-way flag, and from there Laybourne dribbled the ball in magnificent style into the Newport 25. The visitors defended their goal with vigour, and after a succession of scrimmages, which were watched with great interest, the ball was landed in neutral ground. Simpson, however, dribbled well into Newport territory, but the ball was returned by the Newport forwards, and sent in touch near the half-way flag. A scrimmage was formed, from which Cardiff made headway by dribbling, and the ball was kicked in touch in the visitors' territory. From a scrimmage Norton did some smart dribbling, but the ball was kicked back to neutral ground, where, after a scrimmage, it went in touch. When thrown out Newport advanced some yards, and one of their men made a fine run to within a short distance of the home goal. The excitement at this point was intense and the struggle which took place was certainly one of great keenness. Cardiff eventually worked the ball out of the 25, but it was returned by a kick, and a scrimmage formed in a position of peril to the home team. Cardiff held their opponents back, but had a narrow escape when Newman tried to run in. He was only collared when within a few feet of the goal line, and the scrimmage which followed was one in which both teams exerted themselves. The danger was averted by Spickett, who, by a smart run, for which he was warmly applauded, carried the leather out of the 25, where he was pushed in ouch. When thrown out, Cardiff dribbled into neutral ground. Time was then called, no point having been scored. The match was one of the most exciting that has been witnessed in Cardiff for some time past, and praise is due to both teams for their excellent play. The following are the names of the teams:- Cardiff: Barlow, back; W. D. Phillips and T. Williams, three-quarter backs; W. Spickett and Arthurs, half-backs; Girling (captain), J. Simpson, J. A. Jones, E. Laybourne, J. Hinton, Grimes, E. Thomas, Norton, W. P. Phillips, and A. Evans, forwards. Newport: T. B. Jones and J. Bridie, three-quarter-backs; G. F. Harding, half-back; C. H. Newman and T. Clapp, quarter-backs; Spittle, F. T. Purdon, H. S. Lyne, R. Gould, S. Lloyd-Jones, W. Young, J. H. Lewis, H. O. R. Phillips, W. Phillips (captain), and T. Harding, forwards. The return match will be played on the 15th inst., instead of the Monmouthshire v. Somersetshire, which is off."