Northampton Saints Director of rugby Jim Mallinder says tonight's game against the Ospreys is an important stepping stone for the his squad this season. (KO 7.45pm)
The Saints head to the Liberty Stadium for the opening match in the 2009/10 LV= Cup just five days after their Guinness Premiership trip to Leicester. Nevertheless Mallinder has handed a first start of the season to just four players - Mark Hopley, Jon Vickers, Joe Gray and Alan Dickens, who also captains the side.
"Inevitably with such a quick turnaround after a very physical game against Leicester some players have needed a rest," Mallinder said.
"But that in turn presents opportunities for other players to shine. Last season the Anglo-Welsh Cup proved to be a springboard for several players, such as Courtney Lawes and Stephen Myler, who went on to be regulars in the Guinness Premiership and in Europe.
"We are taking a squad to the Liberty Stadium that has worked hard this week and that wants to achieve a positive result and get us off to a good start in the LV= Cup."
Northampton Saints:15 Ben Foden 14 Chris Ashton 13 Joe Ansbro 12 Jon Clarke 11 Chris Mayor 10 Stephen Myler 9 Alan Dickens (capt);1 Regardt Dreyer 2 Joe Gray 3 Jon Vickers 4 James Cannon 5 Christian Day 6 Mark Easter 7 Scott Gray 8 Mark Hopley
Replacements:16 Brett Sharman 17 Alex Waller 18 Adam Parkins* 19 Owen Giles 20 James Ingle 21 John Brake 22 Barry Everitt 23 Grant Pointer
The Webb Ellis Cup visited Lampeter on Monday to recognise the fact that the town is celebrating a major milestone as it is believed the first ever game of rugby played in Wales, was in fact played in Lampeter 150 years ago.
Cardiff Blues U18 Girls will go into Sunday's Gemau Cymru with an extra spring in their step after Welsh internationals Elinor Snowsill and Philippa Tuttiett offered some last minute tips at a training session earlier this week.
Rob Howley and Josh Lewsey addressed more than 250 community club coaches and referees at the first WRU National Community Conference on the weekend. The volunteers benefitted from coaching masterclasses and workshops in a bid to connect all levels of the rugby pathway in Wales.
UEFA has today confirmed the Football Association of Wales (FAW) has been successful in its bid for the Millennium Stadium to host the 2017 UEFA Champions League Final on Saturday 3rd June, 2017 (kick-off: 19.45hrs GMT).
The winners of a filmmaking competition organised by the education charity Into Film and the WRU enjoyed a behind the scenes tour of the Millennium Stadium - and a chance to be photographed with the WRU's fire-breathing, rugby loving mascot, Scorch The Dragon, and Welsh international, Jake Ball.