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Dicomidis moves past Lewis into seventh on Ponty’s all-time appearances list

On Saturday 16th September when Pontypridd ran out onto the field to take on Llandovery most Ponty fans probably wouldn’t have realised that there was a significant milestone for a stalwart of the Club.

That milestone was a 388th Pontypridd appearance for second-row Chris Dicomidis which took him past legendary centre of the 1990’s/early 2000’s Jason Lewis. For a week, Chris and Jason had been joint-seventh on the Club’s all-time appearances list with 387.

Chris and Jason both played during golden eras in the Club’s history – Jason through the highs of the mid to late 1990’s and Chris from 2010-2016 when Ponty won numerous trophies. But many supporters may not remember that the two players’ journeys at the Club overlapped. Coming towards the end of his career and being a mainstay in the Ponty team throughout the Club’s professional era, Jason stayed on with the Club during the early years in the semi-pro era when regionalisation took over the pro game in Wales. It was during the 2004/2005 season that a young Christopher Dicomidis made his debut for Ponty from the bench against Caerphilly on Thursday 30th December 2004 at Sardis Road.

Jason, who was a veteran at the time said: “I do remember Dico turning up for training when he first arrived, very tall, very thin and athletic, and he was very skilful. And credit to him that he attempted to take Chief’s jersey in the second row when Chief was trying to reach 400 games! Luckily for Chris, there was two places in the second row!”

On climbing one further rung up the appearance ladder ahead of Jason, Chris commented: “388 appearances is a big achievement and to go 7th on the all-time list is an honour, especially taking over from a legend like Jason Lewis. I spent a bit of time in Jason’s company and he is a top man who loves the club. I also heard some great stories about the ‘golden’ generation of Ponty that he was a big part of.”

Talking about the here and now, Dico said: “It’s obviously nice to get to 388 but I do have a target in mind that hopefully I can achieve this season. I’m still really enjoying my rugby and there is a great group of boys this season that will hopefully see us climb back up the table and challenge for silverware.”

Jason Lewis was a real fan favourite during his fifteen-year playing career with Pontypridd RFC. A tough, hard-working and unassuming character during his playing days, Jason had some particularly classy words of praise for his former team mate: “I’d like to congratulate Dico on the amazing achievement of reaching 388 games for Pontypridd. I know how hard it is to get to that total with the high standards which are set at Ponty. To be able to reach that amount of games takes a lot of commitment, week in week out. Every game you have to perform at such a high standard, and there are always other boys who want to wear your jersey. To do it for this length of time is exceptional, and just shows the quality player that Chris is.”

Revered by the Club and its supporters over many years, the feeling from Jason was, and always will be mutual. Looking back at his time at Sardis Road he said: “Pontypridd is a brilliant rugby club, I have always loved the place. They have the best supporters in Wales, without a shadow of a doubt. All I ever wanted to do was play for Ponty and I was lucky to do so in arguably one of the best eras to date. Sardis Road is an amazing place to play. Chris and I have been lucky enough to play in successful teams over the years. My highlights would be winning the Swalec Cup finals and the league, but I really enjoyed the European adventures – being involved in those games brings back so many good memories. So many stories have come from those games. I’ve been very lucky to have played with so many outstanding rugby players on the field, and also great characters off it, which I still call friends today.”

Jason finished off congratulating our current second row by saying: “This is a great achievement Chris, well done, and I hope you continue to climb the table with a few more appearances. Good luck mate and all the best, Jakey.”

Here’s to 400 Dico

Pontypridd RFC’s all-time top 10 appearances list (as of 18/9/2023) –

  1. Bob Penberthy – 877
  2. Dale McIntosh – 449
  3. Graham Gittins – 444
  4. Jock Watkins – 435
  5. Tommy David – 404
  6. Arfon Jones – 400
  7. Chris Dicomidis – 388* not out
  8. Jason Lewis – 387
  9. Russell Jones – 383
  10. Dafydd Lockyer – 381