London Welsh will visit Neath ahead of the 2019/20 season.
Neath have lined up attractive opponents for their first pre-season friendly with the Exiles of London Welsh visiting The Gnoll on Saturday, August 17th.
The match will kick off at noon to minimise disruption for the cricketers “next door” and to allow both teams and supporters to repair to the Clubhouse to watch the televised Wales-England World Cup warm-ups which kicks off at 2.15pm.
London Welsh are fighting their way back up the English league ladder and won a second successive promotion from London Division 3 North West losing only once.
Their player-coach is former Neath and Ospreys prop Cai Griffiths who is looking forward to returning to The Gnoll.
He said, “When I first came to South Wales, Neath was my first club and it will be great to come down and see so many old friends. Like Neath, London Welsh are on the way back after recent troubles and it will be a good test for both teams ahead of what will be a challenging season.”
Neath secretary Mike Price said, “The opportunity to play London Welsh again could not be missed as they do not play in Wales so often these days.
“Our clubs have a long relationship and Neath men were heavily involved in the creation of London Welsh in the 1880’s. After that, we enjoyed regular fixtures and I am young enough to just about remember my father taking me to The Gnoll to watch the last Christmas Day fixtures in the mid-Sixties.
“Cai was at The Gnoll recently for our Sponsors’ Lunch and it will be good to see him and them back at Neath. They have supporters across Wales and it will certainly be an interesting start to our new campaign and something special for our players to look forward to early on.”
NEATH v LONDON WELSH – The Gnoll – Saturday, August 17th – Noon Kick Off