There are three appetising amateur fixtures on offer on Saturday in Wales.
Ian Golden previews the action
West Wales Raiders host Valley Cougars at Stebonheath Park in Llanelli in a vital Conference League South game for both sides (kick-off 2.30pm).
The Raiders are one position but seven points behind the Cougars in fourth place in the table and they will want to keep up their momentum after an excellent win over Gloucestershire All Golds last week.
Cougars are currently in third place but with two games in hand over second placed Nottingham Outlaws so a win for them will put them back in pole position for a home semi-final game at the end of the season.
Raiders’ coach Jon Ellis said: “We understand that we are in for a very physical and tough game as the Cougars are playing very well in the league so far. Last time we played against Valley Cougars in Treharris, we did not prepare very well and took a very young squad which showed as the Cougars ran in a fair few tries in the second half. This weekend we will not be making the same mistakes and shall be looking to select the strongest possible side we have available.”
Cougars’ coach Dafydd Hellard said: “We know that Raiders will be strong at home, we found that out last season, it was one of the few games we lost. We’ll travel there with a strong squad and determination as we want a top two place at the end of the season.”
Torfaen Tigers entertain Gloucestershire All Golds at Cwmbran RFC (kick-off 2.30pm) with both sides coming off the back of large defeats in their previous games.
This game starts a run of four consecutive games at home and coach Kyle Scrivens believes that this is the Tigers’ chance to start a good run of form and get into the play-offs.
“We could go just a point behind the Raiders in the table if we win,” he said. “We’re looking forward to Saturday.
“It was a back and forth fixture at their place earlier in the season, but our home form is traditionally much better than our away form. We are under no illusions that All Golds are a good outfit though. It could be the last chance saloon for us with regards to our play off ambitions.”
Saturday also sees a Welsh Conference game with Blaenau Gwent Sharks hosting Cardiff City RL in Tredegar (kick-off 2.00pm) in the capital side’s last regular game of the season.
Following Bridgend Blue Bulls’ 46-10 win over West Wales Raiders reserves on Wednesday night, Cardiff can only finish in third place and this game could just about seal that position for them.
Cardiff City captain, Kyle Rose, said: “The boys are looking forward to this weekend’s game against a very tough Sharks outfit in a tough place. Every man wants to put right the wrongs from the Aber Valley game and get the win.
“As a squad we’ve been building nicely but it’s time we put together a big win and the boys are fired up for it. We know it’s the last game of the regular season but we aren’t looking past the Sharks. Everybody has a job to do and we’re looking forward to a tough, physical battle as the reverse fixture played out.”
Saturday 23 July 2016
West Wales Raiders RL v Valley Cougars
Torfaen Tigers v All Golds CLS
Blaenau Gwent Sharks v Cardiff City RL