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Premier League to kick-off in Cwmbran on Friday

Premier League to kick-off in Cwmbran on Friday

10th May 2017, 15:35

Wales Rugby League’s new Premier League kicks off this Friday with a thrilling encounter at Cwmbran RFC where old rivals Torfaen Tigers and Valley Cougars face off (kick-off 7pm).


Then Saturday’s fixtures sees the rebranded Cardiff Blue Dragons take on last year’s Welsh domestic champions Bridgend Blue Bulls at their new home at Glamorgan Wanderers RFC (kick-off at 2pm). West Wales Raiders v Rhondda Outlaws, set to go ahead on Saturday, has been postponed.


Valley Cougars, Torfaen Tigers and West Wales Raiders have come back to the Welsh set-up after the RFL’s Conference League South was closed down at the end of last season, so both the Cougars and Tigers will be determined to make their first game in Wales’ new rebranded competition, a winning one.


The Cougars reached the Grand Final of last year’s Conference South, but they know that any one of the six sides in this season’s Premier League, is capable of winning the competition.


Torfaen chairman Rob Davies said: “We've recruited well in the off season, picking up players from the student game, the military and northern clubs as well as local rugby union. These additions will complement the existing squad nicely. It’s also fantastic news that our first batch of junior players have now ‘aged out’ into the senior team.


“We've been training hard for a few months. It was disappointing to have two friendlies cancelled due to the weather but we managed a run out against Bristol Sonics that saw a comfortable win with a side containing seven debutants.


“The moment the fixtures were released this was the game people were looking for as it's the biggest club game in the Welsh Rugby League. I'm sure it'll be tight, hard fought encounter as always this Friday.”


Cougars coach Dafydd Hellard adds: “Matches between us and the Tigers are always entertaining. They’re one of the highlights of the season, let alone a round, so to kick off the new Premier League with this fixture will ensure that the competition starts with a bang.


“We’ll have a mix of old and new players and of course our large and boisterous travelling support, so expect fireworks and a great atmosphere in Cwmbran on Friday night.”


Cardiff Blue Dragons’ move to Glamorgan Wanderers is a positive step for the capital club but their welcoming of Bridgend Blue Bulls to the Memorial Ground will be a baptism of fire for the home side.


Cardiff team manager Alf Harvey said: “It has been a  busy pre-season cementing the relationship at Glamorgan Wanderers and recruiting coaching staff and volunteers. After a successful set of pre-season games, the senior team are in a good place prior to the season kick-off against the always impressive Bridgend Blue Bulls.


“The club has seen an excellent response from the community so we will be fielding a full junior section for the first time at all age levels.


“We are looking forward to welcoming all the age grades of Bridgend Blue Bulls over the weekend which we are sure will be a great advert for junior rugby league in South Wales.”


An under 15 encounter between the two sides precedes this game with the under 13 and 17 games taking place on Sunday from 11am.


Bridgend team manager Stephen Smith said: “We’re defending our title and we’ve done that before, but this season will be tougher with three sides coming into the League from English competitions. We start against Cardiff who we know very well and it’ll be a tough encounter.”




Torfaen Tigers v Valley Cougars – Friday – Cwmbran RFC – 7pm

Cardiff Blue Dragons v Bridgend Blue Bulls – Saturday – Glamorgan Wanderers RFC – 2pm


JUNIOR GAMES – please check or for fixture times and venues…

Under 17 - Cardiff Blue Dragons v Bridgend Blue Bulls

Under 15 - West Wales Raiders v Rhondda Outlaws

Under 13 - Cardiff Blue Dragons v Bridgend Blue Bulls , West Wales Raiders v DC Wildcats


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