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The XV: Rhys Patchell

13 Jul


Position: Fly-half / Full-back

School: Ysgol Glantaf

As comfortable at full-back as he is at his preferred position of fly-half, Rhys Patchell is a bright prospect with the skill and nous to control games.

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Lloyd Williams on returning to the blues after injury

4 Mar

Lloyd Williams battles back from dislocated shoulder

In his first ever interview, Blues scrum-half Lloyd Williams, talks battling back from injury and career goals exclusively with TheXV.

Welsh under-20 star Lloyd Williams will return just in time to boost the Cardiff Blues Magners League title push.
 
Williams was expected to miss the rest of the season when he suffered a dislocated shoulder during the Blues LV Cup tie with Exeter in Cardiff back in November.
 
But surgeons have been so pleased with his progress he has returned to full-training in just three months rather than the anticipated five, and will be fit for selection when two-time European champions Munster head to the Cardiff City Stadium three weeks today.
 
And after a frustrating time on the sidelines and on the hand bike, Lloyd can’t wait to get back on the pitch.
 
“I am just so fed up of being in the gym now to be honest I can’t wait to get back into contact training and get playing again,” he said.
 
“ I was frustrated to get injured in the first place, but when Richie Rees got banned I was even more irritated because I could of got a good run of games to prove myself. Now it feels a little bit like back to square one.”
 
 Williams returns at a crucial time as the Blues try to resurrect what by their own admission has been a disappointing season.
 
“We set ourselves the target of winning a big title this season so now  all our eggs are in the Magners’ League basket which makes today’s game against Edinburgh massive.”
 
“ I wasn’t registered for Europe last season so I haven’t been involved in a big knockout game for Blues before. Getting to the Magners playoffs is important, they’re the games you really want to be involved in,” he said.

And as Welsh -based stars like Regan King, Lee Byrne and James Hook head for the Magners exit door Lloyd sees the competition as the perfect place to achieve his ambitions.

“The guys leaving, they’re world-class players and they deserve the chance to earn the money.

“I’m not thinking about anything like that though. I love Cardiff, I’m from the area and I have played here since I was 17. I signed on for another two years and if I’m playing well enough for them to extend that I would look too.

“Guys like Jamie Roberts, Gethin Jenkins, Richie Rees they’re the face of the Cardiff Blues and players I admire. For me 15 players who really want to play for Cardiff Blues are going to do better than 15 guys who are there for the money. Look at Stade Francais, it doesn’t always work.”

An unnerlingly humble and respectful man Williams is still ambitious.

“My first aim is to try and nail down the Blues number nine jersey. Obviously long term to play for Wales like my dad (British Lion scrum half Brynmor) would be a dream.

“Maybe after the World Cup they will be looking to experiment and if I have a run of good games who knows.

“Right now I’m just trying to learn as much as I can off Richie and keep improving and enjoying my rugby.

In an era where it’s become a sporting cliche to describe someone as level headed it is refreshing when you meeta palyer who actually is. Well spoken, with a solid philosphy on the game and an abundance of talent, Lloyd Williams has  a huge future in the game.

The XV: Llew Jones

29 Dec


Position: Number Eight

School: Ysgol Glantaf

The back row is an area where caps are up for grabs in the Wales team at the moment, and while a national call-up may be a little far away for Glantaf’s Llew Jones, he is certainly a number eight with a bright future.

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The XV : Stephen Waldron

22 Dec

Position – Right Wing

School – Ysgol Glantaf

When The XV last saw Stephen play, he did not score, did not make a heroic last-ditch try-saving-tackle, in fact he didn’t have a lot to do in the game as a whole, but this in no way hid the fact the Glantaf winger is a special talent.

Waldron has a boxy running style: lots of short, fast steps. He uses stutter steps to fix defenders and  is deceptively difficult to put down, seemingly springing off would be tacklers and scuttling off in another direction.

If you are looking for a professional similarity, think Chiefs and All Black winger Lelia Masaga.

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Perfect Tens: Shingler, Morgan and Davies stake their claims

18 Nov

Wales may be struggling against the Southern Hemisphere giants, but the Welsh conveyor belt of outside-halves seems to be in rude health.

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