Pontypridd round off their qualifying games in Pool D of the British & Irish Cup with a home tie against Birmingham & Solihull this evening (KO 7:30pm).
This encounter will be the third in succession for Ponty against English Championship opposition, having already gained creditable wins at home against Rotherham Titans and away against Doncaster Knights. Also being the second of three games to be played within the space of eight days, the demands on the Pontypridd squad are high.
A win against the Bees will secure outright qualification for Pontypridd from their pool with a 100% record and ensuring a home draw in the quarter final stage of the competition.
With a need to rest players, and with the eight players selected for the Wales Under 20s squad unavailable, changes are inevitably made from the line up which took a bonus point win from the visit to Doncaster last Saturday.
Amongst the players given an opportunity to prove themselves in a tough challenge against the Bees are wing Chris Clayton, outside half Dean Gunter, scrum half Garyn Lucas, props Chris Phillips and Ryan Harford, hooker Huw Dowden and flankers Jake Thomas and Wayne O'Connor - all introduced in a raft of squad rotation. A shortage of second row cover sees an A.N. Other provisionally named on the bench.
Pontypridd 15.Gareth Wyatt. 14.Chris Clayton. 13.Gavin Dacey. 12.Dafydd Lockyer. 11.Owen Williams. 10.Dean Gunter. 9.Garyn Lucas; 1.Chris Phillips. 2.Huw Dowden. 3.Ryan Harford. 4.Craig Locke. 5.Ryan Savage. 6.Jake Thomas. 7.Wayne O'Connor. 8.Chris Dicomidis (capt).
Replacements: Kristian Baller; Simon Humberstone; Matthew Nuthall; Ken Knaggs; Tom Hetherington; A.N. Other; Darren Waters
Ebbw Vale captain Damien Hudd picked up the biggest accolade of the night at the 11th Principality Premiership Awards Evening held at Principality Stadium, after leading his side to the title for the first time.
Wales assistant coach Robin McBryde is predicting a tough battle against England on Sunday despite the fact they may not be considered to be at full strength. Players will be out to impress Eddie Jones which makes England a dangerous proposition, he says.
Wales U20 captain Tom Phillips and performance psychologist Dr Rich Neil explain why spending three days at Monmouth RFC has further strengthened the togetherness of the squad ahead of the #WorldRugbyU20s
Alongside Scarlets flanker James Davies and Cardiff Blues centre Cory Allen, three Wales Sevens core players have made the extended training squad for GB Sevens. Wales Head coach Gareth Williams tells WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie why Luke Treharne, Sam Cross and Luke Morgan earned selection in the initial training squad for Rio.
Wales Sevens head coach Gareth Williams tells WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie he has had to overcome a number of injuries before naming a competitive squad for this weekend's penultimate round of the World Series in Paris.
Merthyr were officially crowned champions of the SSE SWALEC Championship at Dowlais on Saturday where captain Andy Powell paid tribute to his side who have earned promotion to the Principality Premiership