Former Cardiff Blues outside half Nicky Robinson is relishing the return to his hometown as the Blues take on Gloucester this Sunday in the LV Cup semi-finals at Cardiff City Stadium.
Robinson said, "Obviously I left nine months ago and didn't think I'd be coming back so soon. I knew there would be a possibility of facing each other as we did earlier in the season and coming back to Cardiff is a bit more of a special thing."
"So I'm looking forward to seeing and playing at the new stadium and playing against a lot of old friends. I don't think we can read too much into the game at Kingsholm in November."
"We were going through quite a bad patch, and the Blues really added to that. Ceri [Sweeney] converted a last minute kick, to win a game that we should have sewn up. Obviously I was disappointed to go off injured and to have lost the game."
"It's funny how the group turned out and the Blues did Gloucester a favour by winning up at the Scarlets and gave us the route through to the semi."
Speaking of his time at Gloucester Robinson added, "I'm enjoying the experience of living somewhere else and playing in a different environment with new team mates and coaches, and that is the kind of challenge I was looking for."
"It was a difficult start of the year, and as in Cardiff, Gloucester is a big rugby town who want success. Since the turn of the year things have improved and hopefully we can carry that on."
"I'm sure Paul (Tito) meant it in the sincerest of ways when he said I'd get a warm welcome and I look forward to playing against him. I enjoyed my time here with Paul and he's been up to stay with me in Gloucester so I hope he remembers that if I am at the bottom of a ruck."
Sweeney who will be facing his old rival said, "Last yera's final was probably one of our best performances last year I think everything clicked on the day. We started really well and went on to win by 50 points which was great and we really enjoyed that weekend up in London."
"I came on with 10 minutes left at the end and put the ball up in the air, it bounced into my lap, and I was lucky enough to run in for a try. I think it was more luck than judgement."
Going head to head with his former Blues team mate is a prospect Sweeney is looking forward to.
"I've enjoyed a good rivalry with Nicky Robinson and have played against him quite a lot over the years," he said.
"I played against him earlier in the season, when we beat them, but unfortunately he had to go off injured, so I think he'll be coming back to him hometown club and make an impression. I'm sure he'll have a point to prove after we've beaten them away, I'm sure he'll want to have a good game."
All roads lead to Cardiff on Sunday for the SSE SWALEC Finals Day at the Millennium Stadium. Cambrian Welfare tackle Ystradgynlais in the Bowl final, Ystrad Rhondda play Newcastle Emlyn in the Plate final while defending champions Pontypridd face Bridgend in the Cup final.
WRU Chief Executive Roger Lewis, Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism Ken Skates and WRU Chairman Gareth Davies earlier this week launched a new competition in conjunction with the WRU unveiling its archive room.
Welsh players and management joined Deputy Minister for Sport Ken Skates at the Pierhead Building, Cardiff Bay earlier this week to reveal the Union's pioneering school-club hub initiative has been so successful the project will now almost double the scale of the original project.
The Scarlets, Newport Gwent Dragons, Cardiff Blues and the Ospreys look ahead to Judgement Day III which sees the Blues take on the Ospreys (2.30) and the Dragons tackle the Scarlets (4.45pm) at the Millennium Stadium tomorrow afternoon.
Ystradgynlais and Ynysddu played out a titanic struggle at Taffs Well in the SSE SWALEC Bowl semi-final. At the end of the game neither team could be separated after a 15-15 stalemate but Ystradgynlais go through on try count.
Blues strike first in JD III battle - Newport Gwent Dragons lock Andrew Coombs, WRU referee Dylan Llyr Jones and Cardiff Blues hooker Matthew Rees decide dressing room allocations for Judgement Day III
Wales Under 18 captain Calum Haggett has received a conditional offer to read Biomedical Science at St Anne's College, Oxford. WRU chairman Gareth Davies went to meet Calum and Coleg y Cymoedd Principal Judith Evans to wish him luck in his exams and pass on some of his personal experience.