BLACKS TO THE FUTURE – NEATH RUGBY LOOKING FORWARD AGAIN

NEATH RFC are looking forward and and, in praising his young team for coming through their “baptism of fire” to win their opening Premiership game at Bargoed on Saturday, coach Gareth Llewellyn is calling on Neath’s “future citizens” to back the Welsh All Blacks.

The 92-times capped former Wales lock said, “We were very pleased to get the result and to be honest we had enough of the game to suggest we should have won by more.

“Most people had Bargoed down as firm favourites on their big day but our lads came through what was a baptism of fire and really showed their desire and determination to get the points.

“We might not have won that game last year when we lost 11 games by a single score.

“So it was especially pleasing to see the team respond under pressure and have the composure and the plan to win through with that late penalty by teenage outside-half Iwan Evans.

“Yes, we have a lot of work to do especially at the set-pieces on which we have not spent as much time as we would have liked due to key personnel being away for various reasons.

“We are still a developing team. We have introduced 15 new players to the squad this summer on top of those who came aboard last season.

“Saturday’s squad contained nine players who are under 21 including our captain Jordan Collier who is one of many local lads that we are bringing through.

“We are building a team with the ambition to win for Neath, a team which will capture the hearts and imagination of the local community.

“We’ve got RGC at The Gnoll on Saturday and, after their win over Bridgend, it promises to be a cracker.

“It is Fair Week in Neath so we are hoping for a big crowd – and 500 free tickets have gone out to junior schools this week.

“All Under-16’s entry is free and we want the boys and girls of Neath – the citizens of the future – to come along in force to cheer us on.”