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Bedwas v Pontypridd – match preview

Pontypridd open their 2018 – 19 Premiership campaign with an away trip to Bedwas on Saturday 1st September, the match at the Bridge Field kicking off at 2:30pm.

In the build-up to the new season Ponty achieved three victories in friendly games at home to Cambrian Welfare, away to Clifton and at home to Ystalyfera, utilising an extended squad in doing so.

Bedwas and Ponty met three times in the league the previous season. The Gwent team won at Sardis Road by 27pts to 39 in the campaign opener, with Ponty gaining revenge in the East Conference reverse fixture in late October by 15pts to 37. When the Premiership unified into one division at the turn of the year, Ponty were again victorious at Sardis Road by 29pts to 20.

Out of contention for Ponty is outside half Diggy Bird who requires an operation to rectify ankle damage with a couple of months recovery time anticipated. Prop Jon Elley is also recuperating from surgery to his bicep. Another absentee is winger Dale Stuckey, given leave for a family function.

Drafted in are Blues Academy winger George Thomas and prop Gareth Smith from the British Army who has recently been training with Pontypridd.

The Pontypridd team selected to face Bedwas is as follows:

15.Lloyd Rowlands. 14.Alex Webber. 13.Alex Knott. 12.Dafydd Lockyer – cpt. 11.George Thomas. 10.Ceri Sweeney. 9.Huw Rees.

1.Ian George. 2.Geraint Clarke. 3.Gareth Smith. 4.Sean Moore. 5.Chris Dicomidis. 6.Rhodri Jones. 7.Rhys Shellard. 8.Morgan Sieniawski.

Subs: 16.Joel Raikes. 17.Jordan Rees. 18.Gary Williams. 19.Huw Dowden. 20.Ross Morgan. 21.Lloyd Evans. 22.Huw Owen. 23.Joe Popple.

The Club Shop at Sardis Road will be open from 12 noon on Saturday giving supporters the opportunity to browse and buy before the departure of coaches to Bedwas at 1:15pm.