Chairman Peter Rees previews the Newport game

Croeso cynnes iawn i bawb o Glwb Rygbi Casnewydd i Fanc Yr Eglwys heddi! It is with great pleasure that we welcome Newport RFC to Church Bank for the first time in the 2019/20 season.
Whilst the Drovers’ fixture with Aberavon was rained off last week, we understand the sun shone for Newport’s fixture with Merthyr but perhaps the Black & Ambers would have wished it was the other way around as they fell to their third successive defeat. It would however be extremely rash if the home supporters assumed that we can look forward to an easy fixture. If there are any patterns emerging, in this somewhat disjointed season start, it is that every team (except probably Cardiff) is potentially beatable and every team is capable of winning. Whilst this might lead to an exciting season for the spectators, for the team management it probably just adds to the pressure and the need to focus particularly on the home fixtures. A team that can win the majority of their games at home and perhaps then pinch an occasional away win will feel that they have done well this season! So how do the Drovers approach this fixture? Well with only three Indigo league games played at least we have two strong home wins and we know that travelling opponents are always somewhat fearful of their journeys into the Towy Valley! However, this week we are without some key players and the forecast and ground conditions will surely mean that our normal flowing rugby will be at a premium! What is certain is that, despite having games in hand, the Drovers will be determined to build their league points as psychologically we will want to be in the top third of the table as soon as possible and ideally prior to playing any rearranged fixtures.
As the world cup concludes and the players return home a couple of Drovers are going in the opposite direction with both Dino and Lee heading out to Australia! Whilst their absence will create a few selection challenges they will also provide an opportunity for some of our younger players to step up. We have always said that our squad philosophy is to give aspiring professionals an opportunity and, with all the plaudits that our Wyn (Jones, of course) has picked up in Japan, let’s see if another Llandovery Youth product, Daf Land, can take this opportunity to make the next step up and establish himself as a Premiership player with some regular starts. Good luck Daf we are confident you can do it!
Despite last Sunday’s disappointing outcome against South Africa our “Sausage” has, as already mentioned, really made a name for himself but more than that he has really helped put Llandovery in the media. Wasn’t it great to see him chatting with our Patron (HRH the Prince of Wales) who was of course wearing his Drovers pin badge! Da iawn Wyn rydym yn falch iawn ohonoch!
Our match sponsors today are Nick & Julie Hartley of the Towy Bridge Inn, Rhandirmwyn & our own Phil Jones, Groundsman whilst our Match Ball Sponsor is John Morgan, Carpenter (and former WRU referee!) thank you for your support, it is very much appreciated.
Er Gwaethaf Pawb a Phopeth Ni Yma o Hyd! Ymlaen Y Porthmyn!
Peter Rees Cadeirydd/Chairman

Cardiff 16 13 0 3 396 243 61
Carmarthen Quins 17 10 3 4 372 278 54
Aberavon 16 11 0 5 371 272 53
Llandovery 16 9 2 5 344 285 48
Pontypridd 18 10 0 8 394 376 47
Merthyr 18 8 0 10 362 374 44
RGC 1404 17 8 1 8 409 381 43
Newport 15 7 0 8 294 278 37
Swansea 17 7 0 10 246 292 35
Llanelli 15 6 0 9 293 412 27
Ebbw Vale 17 4 2 11 283 351 27
Bridgend Ravens 18 3 0 15 271 493 19