Cardiff RFC have moved to secure the signing of young Welsh second row James Ratti, after his release from the Ospreys at the end of the season.
Ratti has come through the development pathway in Swansea, having played for Dunvant’s mini and junior section, before playing age grade rugby with the Ospreys alongside featuring for Gower College. He then played for Aberavon in the Premiership and gained Wales U20 honours.
However, after making his Guinness Pro14 debut at the end of the 2017/18 campaign, he was unable to kick on last year and ended up playing mostly for Swansea RFC, winning their April player of the month award as the Whites avoided relegation.
He will now join Cardiff RFC, but will be closely linked to the Cardiff Blues setup throughout pre-season and into the Celtic Cup campaign, with the first team currently lacking numbers in the engine room following the departure of George Earle to French ProD2 side Colomiers..
He could well compete with Seb Davies, Rory Thornton, James Down and Macauley Cook for a spot in the Cardiff Blues second row, as well as youngsters Ben Murphy and Callum Bradbury, having found chances restricted at Ospreys by the presence of Alun Wyn Jones, Adam Beard and Bradley Davies.
At 6ft4 and over 17st, if he continues to bulk up he could be the physical presence Cardiff Blues require in the second row, although will need to learn quickly if he is going to be an immediate asset in the first team.
Ratti will be registered with Cardiff RFC though as he continues his development, and will join Kieran Martin in the Blue and Blacks engine room when he is available to play in the Principality Premiership.