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A warm welcome to all for the culmination of the WRU RAG u16 fixtures in what should be a celebration of two fine teams that are well coached and supported brilliantly by a group of volunteers who provide great knowledge, skills and insight for our young players to perform and develop. A special thank you in particular to both head coaches, Lee Davies and David Griffiths, and team managers, Billy Vivian and Mark Gould; Their programme management and unstinting support of all the squad members has been first class,  and they have balanced the high performance nature of the programme alongside the development needs of all the players brilliantly.

It is also vitally important for me to offer my sincere thanks to all the schools and clubs in the pathway that assist in aiding our player development and the talent on display is testimony to their work. In addition, the support of all parents and families is crucial and we appreciate how much time, commitment and effort you show in supporting the boys- I am sure they show their gratitude constantly!

As the final fixture in this block we must value the journey so far, but also important to note a line in the sand and where the players will now endeavour to push on in the pathway. This is an exciting time where we strive to represent the whole of the region as we move to Cardiff Blues combined U16 squads and then the U18 programme. These are underpinned by the prosperous and burgeoning partnership between Cardiff Blues and USW, where facilities and resources can really drive standards and challenge all to achieve potential.

All the best to all involved tonight, enjoy the night and let’s see quality and disciplined rugby. Strength through Unity.”

Gruff Rees,
Cardiff Blues Academy Manager.