WRU official ball supplier Gilbert has produced a new, bespoke ball for SWALEC League clubs.
The improved match ball features durable compound, performance grip and valve seam technology for excellent kicking characteristics.
The ball, which will be available in time for the new season, has been named 'Trydan' as voted by SWALEC employees and the general public on social media, meaning electricity in Welsh.
All SWALEC League clubs receive an annual allocation of balls free of charge, courtesy of the WRU's partnership with Gilbert which sees them exclusively supply balls to every level of the game in Wales, from grassroots to senior international rugby. The number of balls SWALEC League clubs receive depends on the number of teams they run, from mini and junior to youth, women's and girls, first and second teams, as per information given to the WRU via the annual club audit.
On top of their free allocation of balls, to include the new match ball, clubs have the option of purchasing extra balls at a discounted rate.
Josh Lewsey, WRU Head of Rugby said, "We take great pride in being able to reward grassroots clubs, especially those who put so much into the game in Wales through developing players, coaching, referees and administrators. We have some fantastic support from our official suppliers and we are grateful to Gilbert for producing this new, higher quality match ball for use throughout the SWALEC Leagues, and for enabling clubs to purchase additional balls at a reduced rate."
Andy Challis, Gilbert Brand Manager said, "Gilbert's heritage is built upon supplying the highest quality rugby balls suitable for each level of the game. The new 'Trydan' ball has been developed exclusively for the WRU, to be used by grassroots clubs across the whole of Wales - we are delighted to launch it for the new season."
Wendy Barbour, Director of Sponsorship for SSE/SWALEC, added: "Everyone involved in rugby knows how significant an opportunity it is to get the chance to name a Gilbert ball - it'd be a proud moment for any rugby fan so we were delighted when Gilbert gave our employees that chance. We're always keen to let our staff show their creative flair, as they're an innovative bunch, and we weren't disappointed as they came up with a great selection of possible names for the ball. SSE staff from all over the UK took part and 'Trydan' was a strong contender right from the start."
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.
The WRU has launched a campaign to create a long term legacy for Welsh club rugby by highlighting the advantages of volunteering. Rhian Edwards, a volunteer at Seven Sisters, has enjoyed many benefits of her volunteering at a grassroots rugby club including being part of the Rugby World Cup volunteer workforce after being nominated by the WRU - and the WRU is asking for more people to develop their 'Welsh rugby roots'.