Blues Academy lock Cory Hill makes a welcome return to Ponty ranks.
Pontypridd go into a crunch British & Irish Cup quarter final tie away to Leinster A this weekend, at Donnybrook Park Dublin (KO 2pm.
Conceding home advantage as one of the qualifying pool leaders with the least points accumulated, Ponty no doubt face a daunting task against the powerful Irish province. They also go into the tie on the back of a disappointing away defeat to Bridgend in the Welsh Premiership the previous Saturday.
The tag of underdog is securely attached to Pontypridd in this winner takes all encounter, but that will suit the mindset of the Valley Commandos admirably.
A week of training where psychology has been as important as skills or fitness, has progressed well for Pontypridd. Their hopes have also been boosted by a quick return to fitness of outside half Simon Humberstone and prop Ryan Harford, both having undergone scans which dispelled the fears of a broken nose and thumb respectively.
Also making a welcome comeback from injury are Blues Academy lock Cory Hill and prop Pat Palmer, both going straight into the starting line up.
Drafted into the back line are promising young full back Harley Thomson and winger Lewis Williams. Chris Phillips takes over the loose head prop berth with Stuart Williams out injured and Ken Knaggs serving a suspension.
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.