West Wales Raiders are the final of Wales’ three clubs to open their RFL Conference South season for 2016 as this Saturday they travel to champions Nottingham Outlaws (kick-off 2.30pm) writes Ian Golden.
With Torfaen Tigers and Valley Cougars falling in their first games over the last couple of weeks, West Wales will hope to reverse this fortune and bring a win back to Llanelli.
The Raiders are fielding three of their seven new signings – this will be the first outing for Alex Keeton, Thomas Stratford and Liam Johnson all who are in the Army Rugby League set up.
Three of the other new signings, Andy Walton , Mark Murgatroid, and Murphy Holt will join the club at the end of April with the fourth player from the Army set up, David Kearns joining when he recovers from a shoulder injury
Andrew Thorne, director at West Wales Raiders, said: “The teams in the Conference League South are looking strong this year particularly with the inclusion of the London Chargers and the All Golds who have started off the season well, but what better way to kick start the season than to face last season’s champions.
“Nottingham are a quality outfit who always perform well, especially at their home ground. This will be our first game for a month so the lads are itching to get back into the swing of things, I am also looking forward to seeing how the new lads gel with our current squad.
“The club has worked hard during the off season to build the game in West Wales and the new signings will hopefully help us continue that trend. Traveling to Nottingham will be tough but I’m hoping that the lads will do the club proud.”
Meanwhile, Valley Cougars will travel to Gloucestershire All Golds to face their second team, hoping to bounce back from their narrow defeat to London Chargers last week.
The All Golds sneaked a win at Coventry Bears Reserves and will be looking to make it two in a row.
“It’s important that we start well,” said Cougars coach Dafydd Hellard. “We were 16-0 down before we got going last week and we can’t let that happen again. If we start well and keep our discipline then I’m sure we’ll do okay.”