Cardiff Blues have announced their U16 squads and coaching staff who will compete in the 2019/20 Regional Age Grade Championships.
The North and South teams will go up against similarly split teams from the Dragons, Ospreys, Scarlets and RGC in two fixture blocks; September-October and January-February, before coming together to form a Cardiff Blues U16 combined squad next April.
They follow on from the success of the previous two seasons, which have seen no Cardiff Blues U16 side lose any games outside of inter-region derbies, with first and second place finishes in the RAG table.
On both occasions it has been Cardiff Blues U16 North who have emerged victorious in those inter-region derbies, with Sam Williams taking over as head coach, combining the role with playing in the second row for Aberavon and lecturing in sport at Coleg y Cymoedd, and looking to repeat that feat.
He will be assisted by Gavin Williams, the brother of former Cardiff Blues centre Owen, while Michael Morgan looks after the backs, Chad Mutiazimbi is in charge of the defence, Damian Regin deals with the contact area, and the scrum coach will be Luke Thomas.
The squad itself has a strong Rhondda Schools Rugby influence, as you might expect, after they made the semi-finals of last season’s Dewar Shield.
Cardiff Blues U16 North
Forwards: Blake Griffiths, Callum Dawe, Dewi Hobbs, Ellis Veale, Evan Addis, Garin Enoch, Iwan Coyle, Kai Carnell, Keane Evans, Kian Mattervers, Kian Evans, Kieron Heatlie, Lewys Walsh, Liam Jones, Owen Williams, Rhys Tyler, Rian Mason Jenkins
Backs: Ben Newton, Caelum Cox, Chad Powell, Dylan Williams, Ioan Evans, Ioan Thomas, Jack Roberts, Jacob Symes, Jayden Williams-Witney, Jaydon Lewis, Rio Davies, Sam Harris, Thomas Edwards, Ty Lewis
Cardiff Blues U16 South, on the other hand, are looking to finally get their hands on the Regional Age Grade Championship trophy, having fallen at that final inter-region derby hurdle in both of the previous two seasons.
They will be able to take confidence in the fact that a number of players have already tasted success, as a strong Cardiff Schools contingent is included on the back of their Dewar Shield win last season.
The squad will once again be coached by Dai Griffiths, combining the role with being head coach at St Peters RFC, while he will be assisted by the familiar face of Cardiff Blues centre Garyn Smith.
Another recognisable figure is former Cardiff Blues and London Welsh, and current Merthyr, prop Nathan Trevett, who is in as scrum coach, while Lee Highgate combines coaching at Glamorgan Wanderers with being contact area coach.
Chad Mutiazimbi is also defence coach of the U16s South, while Michael Thomas looks after the backs, and Stuart Campbell is in charge of the forwards.
Cardiff Blues U16 South
Forwards: Dan Heselton, Sam Sully, Sam Godfrey, Jack Lock, Sam James, Will Fyfe, Nigel Aaron Clement, McKenzie Martin, Rhys Burleton, Josh Lee, Tom Caple, Rhys Ford, Casey Williams, Woody Facey, Gruff Lloyd, Josh Hamner, Josh Edwards, Zach Mutyambizi, Evan Jones, Harper Chamberlain
Backs: Orson James, Finn Charles, Morgan Bowen, Euen Phillips, Joe Pearce, Louie Hennessey, Osian Coates, Jack Grant, Harrison James, Zach Wall, Ben Moon, Owen Yeoman, Louis Rochefort-Shugar, Owen Richards