Cardiff and Pontypridd renew their rivalry in the British & Irish Cup tonight.
"Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue (and black!)"
An age old rivalry of Welsh rugby will be reincarnated in a new format as Pontypridd take on the Blue & Blacks of Cardiff in the inaugural pool match of the British & Irish Cup this evening. (KO 7.15pm)
The match will be played at the Arms Park - with Ponty having to borrow their opponents' home ground. The new cup tournament offers a way forward for the semi professional club game in Wales, but can thrive on some of the old tribal rivalries in doing so.
Despite the disruption of bad weather and postponed games, along with the switch of venues, the Ponty squad have trained well this week and according to reports from within the camp, are champing at the bit for some competitive action.
Centre Gavin Dacey failed a late fitness test on his damaged shoulder, and joins flanker Kristian Dacey (shoulder), wing Owen Williams (jaw) and scrum half Gavin Morris (knee) on the sick list. Unavailable through regional commitments are props Sam Hobbs (Blues) and Pat Palmer (Dragons).
Kristian Baller continues on the wing, with Adam Thomas slotting in at outside centre. Outside half Dai Flanagan and lock Chris Dicomidis both return from a stint with the senior Blues squad to claim their places in the Ponty starting line-up, likewise hooker Rhys Williams on the bench.
Pontypridd 15.Matthew Nuthall. 14.Kristian Baller. 13.Adam Thomas. 12.Dafydd Lockyer. 11.Chris Clayton. 10.Dai Flanagan. 9.Rhys Downes; 1.Stuart Williams. 2.Huw Dowden. 3.Ryan Harford. 4.Ryan Savage. 5.Chris Dicomidis. 6.Rhys Lloyd. 7.Wayne O'Connor. 8.Nathan Strong - cpt.
Replacements: Dean Gunter; Aaron Bramwell; Lewis Williams; Rhys Williams; Lewis Smout; Grant Harrington; Darren Waters,
As the countdown continues for RWC2015, Tournament Chief Executive Debbie Jevans visited the Millennium Stadium to discuss preparations for the eight matches and reveal the positive news that 100,000 tickets for games at the home of Welsh rugby have sold in the last seven days.
Jason Harries is targeting a first win on the World Series circuit this season with Wales. The series returns to action this weekend in Dubai where Harries is part of a team hoping to build from its efforts in round one in October.
Wales skipper Jevon Groves says his side have addressed a few points from Gold Coast and aim to 'hit the ground running' in the next two rounds of the World Series, kicking off with this weekend in Dubai before heading off to South Africa next week.
Wales Sevens manager Steff Thomas is hopeful his side can build from a quarter-final spot in the opening round of the World Series in Australia when his side take part in the forthcoming double header in Dubai and South Africa.