Ryan Jones meets members of the Welsh Guards at Cardiff Arms Park today
Record Wales captain holder Ryan Jones has shown his support for the Welsh Guards who returned home today after a demanding six month tour of Afghanistan.
Soldiers from First Battalion Welsh Guards paraded through Cardiff city centre after a memorial service at City Hall.
The service was held to remember Lance Corporal Lee Davies, Guardsman Craig Roderick, Guardsman Apete Tuisovurua and Warrant Officer Class 2 Leonard Thomas, who were all killed in action during Operation Herrick 16.
Afterwards, soldiers marched through the centre of Cardiff to a reception to celebrate their return at Cardiff Arms Park where the Walk on Wales campaign was also launched.
The campaign will see relay teams walk the Welsh Coast Path to raise £1 million for the Welsh Guards Afghanistan Appeal and Combat Stress in August next year.
Wales forward Jones took time out of from his preparations for tomorrow's game with Australia to attend the event and support what he sees as a worthy cause.
"I'm going to support the Walk on Wales campaign and I'm also a patron of the Welsh Guards. It's a relationship that has grown over recent months and it's a worthy cause," he said.
"I've got nothing but admiration for what these guys go through and the sacrifices they make.
"When you see all the hard work they put in both abroad and when they get back to Wales it's truly inspiring."
A number of dignitaries attended the parade and showed their support for the troops.
"It's all very well watching it from the TV in your kitchen but when you hear about the sacrifices the soldiers make they deserve all the support they get," added Jones.
"They're the real heroes in Wales and it's something the whole country needs to get behind."
The British & Irish Cup kicks off this weekend with the four Regional Premiership Select XVs flying the flag for Wales. Welsh
Sat 14 Nov: Blues Premiership Select v Nottingham (2.30) & Connacht Eagles v Dragons (2.30)
Sun 15 Nov: Yorkshire Carnegie v Ospreys Premiership Select (1.30) & Scarlets v Bedford Blues (3.00)
The Welsh Rugby Union is forming a new Youth Board with a brief to help keep more young people involved in the game during their late teenage years and beyond. The first task of the fifteen strong Board will be to analyse and consider the issues which lead to a number of youngsters drifting away from the sport between the ages of 16 and 21. To apply visit www.wru.wales/youthboard
The Foster's Challenge Cup will involve the 12 Principality Premiership sides and will run during European and British & Irish Cup weeks, providing vital fixtures for the participating clubs and an opportunity for upcoming players to step up to semi-professional rugby and make a claim for starting places within the Premiership squads.
Eighty schools and colleges in Wales now have a full time rugby officer as part of the WRU's school club hub scheme. All of the school club hub officers recently gathered at the National Centre of Excellence for various workshops.
With Liam Williams forced out of the World Cup through injury, lock Luke Charteris and Skills Coach Neil Jenkins say they have to put yesterday's defeat behind them as Wales now look ahead to another physical encounter against South Africa in the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup.
WRU Consultant Head of Physical Performance Paul Stridgeon praises the Physical Performance department for their work and dedication as he addresses the media ahead of Wales' Pool A clash against Australia
Twelve young people have been selected to follow a one year WRU Coach Core apprenticeship programme. Coach Core was set up by the Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry as part of the Olympics legacy in 2012 and the Duke of Cambridge was on hand to meet the apprentices on their first day in the job. The programme has been funded by the Hunter Foundation.