Cardiff Rugby Club will be presented with a newly created Principality Premiership Trophy after their match with Pontypool at the Arms Park this Saturday - much to the delight of 9-year-old school girl Weronika Wojciechowska.
The Birchgrove Primary pupil won the Principality Building Society competition to design a bespoke prize for the winners of Welsh club rugby's top division and Cardiff this week sealed the Principality Premiership title with a 27-22 victory over Pontypridd on Tuesday.
The new, stainless steel, 18inch, 'deceptively heavy' trophy was inspired by a design resembling a cascade of rugby balls, chosen because of its unusual and contemporary look and has been created by Welsh sculptor Nia Wyn Jones.
Cardiff will be the first club to lift the new trophy and Principality's Graeme Yorston says this is a fitting accolade to Ms Wojciechowska's impressive design.
"The competition was extremely well received throughout Wales with many schools and a variety of premiership rugby clubs generating some outstanding entries," said Mr Yorston, Chief Operating Officer at Principality.
"The winner was perhaps the most elegant entry, simple in design and achievable in terms of getting it from paper to physical form, but also remarkable and striking and something that truly represented the modern game of rugby.
"Weronika has created a piece of sporting history that will be displayed for years to come - her parents and the artist who made the trophy should be extremely proud and we are all very much looking forward to seeing the creation held aloft at the Arms Park on Saturday."
Jones, the Cardiff-born artist who created the new trophy, says it was Weronika's unusual design which won her the competition.
"We saw over 100 entries and the standard was very high, but we like this one because it was able to inspire something contemporary and modern," said Jones. "There were a lot of entries that were more traditional showing cups in various forms, but the winner was eye-catching and particularly well presented.
"The result does not stick literally to the original design, but is inspired by the use of rugby balls and features individual stainless steel elipses interlocking with invisible welds and given an angle-ground finish.
"The trophy is deceptively heavy and solid and is a departure from the traditional cup designs which winners may have been able to drink out of or wear on their heads. This trophy is more for a mantelpiece or a trophy cabinet, although its probably sturdy enough to leave on display outside.
"It's a fitting rugby trophy for the professional modern era particularly, because you'd need to be the size of a rugby player to lift it above your head."
Welsh Rugby Union president Dennis Gethin will be joined by the winning designer for the ceremonial handing over of the Principality Premiership trophy to Cardiff after their match with Pontypridd at the Arms Park on Saturday (Kick-off 2.30pm), he added: "It will be an honour to hand over the trophy to Cardiff alongside Weronika who has done such a magnificent job with the design.
"Cardiff have been consistent campaigners all season and their impressive victory over Pontypool earlier this week capped a wonderful season for them. I'm sure this new trophy will sit proudly in their trophy cabinet for the duration of the 2009/2010 season and give them extra incentive to retain the title next year too."
As well as the opportunity to design and present the trophy Weronika will attend one of the 'Captain's run' pre-match training session during the Invesco Perpetual Series in November, a unique personal training session for the Welsh team led by the Welsh captain. Weronika will also attend the match the following day and receive £100 in a Principality Building Society children's saving account.
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