Wales Rugby League

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About the Conference

About the Conference About the Conference
Torfaen Tigers

The Welsh Conference is Wales' flagship Rugby League competition. Held since 2003, with a minimum of six clubs, the competition starts in May and concludes in August with the Welsh Grand Final.

The competition also runs at a number of age-grade levels.

The winners of the Welsh Conference have the option to enter the national Harry Jepson Trophy and to enter the following year's Challenge Cup.

For more details about the Welsh Conference, to find a club to play for or to find out information about fielding a side, please email idris.evans@walesrugbyleague.co.uk

History

The Welsh Conference was founded in 2003 following the success of Cardiff Demons in the English Conference system, where they had competed since 2001, and the desire to spread the game across South Wales.

A meeting was held at Bridgend Town FC in the winter of 2003, chaired by Danny Sheehy, where representatives from a number of potential clubs attended.

Six teams competed in that first season - Aberavon Fighting Irish, Bridgend Blue Bulls, Cynon Valley Cougars, Rumney Rhinos, Swansea Bulls and Torfaen Tigers.

Cardiff elected to stay in the South West of England Conference for that first season to let the other clubs settle in, but when they faced Aberavon and Bridgend in the national play-offs, they were beaten in both games. They transferred to the Welsh Conference in 2004. Here's how Sky Sports reported on the Bridgend v Cardiff encounter.

The first Grand Final wasn't marketed as such, it was merely a South Wales and West play-off to decide a national semi-final place for a competition known as the Harry Jepson trophy. Bridgend won that match and ended up winning the Harry Jepson trophy, a feat they would echo two years later on their own turf.

The Welsh Conference has seen a number of formats over the years and has been regionalised with a competition also set up in North Wales but it still remains a strong tournament and has led to a number of players turning professional.

Welsh Conference Grand Finals (South Wales)

Welsh Conference Shield Finals (South Wales)

Welsh Conference Grand Finals (North Wales)

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