A number of players bid farewell to Cardiff RFC

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Having announced 20 new signings ahead of the 2019/20 season, they unfortunately come hand-in-hand with a number of departures over the summer.

Keeping the majority of the WRU National Cup winning and Principality Premiership second place squad together would have been ideal, but the nature of the semi-professional game is such that squad turnover is usually quite high.

The first departure is not unexpected, but still a disappointment as club captain Joey Tomlinson will depart for a new challenge in Canada this summer, after a fine final season in Blue and Black.

He has been at the Arms Park as a Cardiff RFC player for five seasons, having been in the Cardiff Blues academy before that, playing 103 times, scoring 20 tries and working back from an horrendous knee injury to lift the WRU National Cup for the first time since 1997 in April.

Joining him in leaving is another familiar face over the last five years, as Will Rees-Hole departs due to commitments outside of rugby, meaning we will no longer see those classic running angles from midfield.

Bouncing between Cardiff Blues and Dragons as a youngster, he found a home at the Arms Park as a semi-professional player in 2014 and has made exactly 100 appearances in all competitions, scoring 51 tries.

will rees-hole pontypridd
Will Rees-Hole leaves after five seasons

As well as Tomlinson and Rees-Hole, it has previously been confirmed that another stalwart has moved on, with James Murphy heading up the A470 to Pontypridd for next season.

Other players departures already known about are Tom Daley, who has returned to Merthyr for next season, while Ian Jenkins has called time on his playing career.

Of the players who have spent less time at the Arms Park there are still a few fan favourites moving on as Martin Roberts and his unbelievably skinny legs depart with a destination not yet known.

The former Ospreys, Scarlets and Bath scrum-half, who has a Welsh cap to his name, only spent a season with Cardiff but made 35 appearances, scoring five tries, as a key player in such a successful campaign.

Llywarch ap Myrddin also moves on this summer, returning to Newport where he joined from, after two seasons with the Blue and Blacks. Affectionately known as Larry, he played 43 times and scored 11 tries, but found playing time restricted this season with the emergence of Edd Howley.

Llywarch ap Myrddin Cardiff RFC
Llywarch ap Myrddin heads back to Newport

Similarly to Larry, Kieron Brown and Steffan Jones leave having struggled to nail down a place in the starting XV during 2018/19.

Tighthead prop Brown arrived from Bargoed in 2017 and made 38 appearances in all competitions, but only started 12 games and will return to Bargoed for next season.

He will be joined at Bargoed Park by fly-half Jones, who played 27 times after joining last summer, but only started 13 games, with three of them coming at centre. Despite that he was still able to score 141 points.

Finally, two players who rarely featured for Cardiff this season depart back to the clubs they joined from this summer, with Adam Jones going back to Newport, while Morgan Griffiths returns to Carmarthen.

Jones played regularly in midfield during the early part of the season, making 13 appearances and scoring three tries, but hasn’t played since January, while Griffiths was injured for a long period after playing in the first game of the campaign, returning for five matches after March.

All players are thanked for their time as Blue and Blacks, and wished the best of luck wherever the future takes them…except against Cardiff!

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