1st February 2013, 17:02
LEWIS IS A REAL INSPIRATION
PROP PUGH OVERCOMES THE BARRIERS TO BE A WELSH CHAMPION
LEWIS Pugh (pictured) became a Welsh rugby champion last year by helping Penallta Storm's unbeaten run to the Welsh Conference Under-15 title.
It was remarkable, however, that 15-year-old Lewis was on the pitch at all to play rugby with his team-mates because the inspiring teenager has a disability.
He was, though, a key part of the team and will be in the future as well, says his head coach David Kincade.
Few people in the Welsh Conference Under-15s know that Lewis has cerebral palsy but that has not stopped him charging into opponents, making as many tackles as the rest of his able-bodied team-mates and working tirelessly around the pitch.
Lewis took up rugby league in May last year but has quickly gone from a novice into a really excellent player and ball-handler, which is again an achievement as he has a weakness down the left side of his body and only two digits on his left hand.
Nevertheless, that has not stopped him becoming a shining and inspirational example with the Storm, and almost an ever-present in training.
Kincade said: "Lewis joined in tournaments in May and he missed one game due to a school function right the way through the school tournaments and into the Conference.
"He has two digits on his one hand which would effect someone's ball carrying and passing but it doesn't seem to bother him at all.
"He was more than willing to take part in the game with the result that he is now a Welsh champion with Penallta.
"He plays prop as part of the tight six and, if you saw him in the (Conference) Final carrying ball and smashing into the Steelers side, you would agree it was magnificent."
And, when the side leave Penallta, Lewis will be with them. Kincade added: "We are going to the Aber Valley Wolves this year and he will be part of it - and good for him."