Things improved after Christmas with the forwards in fine form and well supported by half-backs, Paul Turner and Nigel Callard. There was a succession of good results including a Welsh Cup Q/F win over Swansea at Rodney Parade. Newport then beat Aberavon in the S/F at Cardiff and met Cardiff in the final at the National Stadium on April 26th 1986. A crowd of 38,000 saw Cardiff take a 22 v 6 lead helped by controversial refereeing decisions. Back came Newport with Paul Turner and flanker Richie Collins leading the way but Newport just failed and went down 28 v 21.
The season ended with Newport taking 4th place in the Merit Table and 5th place in the Welsh Unofficial Championship. Paul Turner was top scorer with 191pts form 25 games.
Top try scorers were wing Shaun McWilliam and scrum half Nigel Callard with 15 each. Second row John Widdecombe made 41 appearances travelling from Torquay every week. He was followed by David Waters (40) and Rhys Morgan (37) who passed 400 games during the season ending on 436. Richie Collins and Jason White toured Italy with Wales B and fullback Jon Callard captained Wales U20.