Cardiff Blues Women face Scarlets Women as the Women’s Regional Championship gets underway with a double header at Llandarcy Academy of Sport this Saturday.
The game will kick-off at 12pm, and will be followed by last season’s champions Ospreys Women taking on RGC Merched at 3pm, with £3 entry for supporters.
After last week’s Regional Super 12s event, that saw Cardiff Blues Women take over 30 players up to Llandovery RFC for a series of 12-a-side games, head coach Darren Bool had some difficult decisions to make when it came to naming a matchday 23.
He has opted for a fairly new look tight five, with Jordan Hopkins, Kim Jones and vice-captain Cerys Hale packing down up front, and Liliana Podpadec and Charlie Mundy teaming up in the engine room.
The back row is led by captain Abbie Flemming on the openside, with Shona Powell-Hughes on the blindside and Georgia Evans at number eight.
At half-back there is new pairing as the experience of Kierra Deeks at scrum-half links up with 20-year-old fly-half India Berbillion, while Welsh international Hannah Bluck and vice-captain Molly Philpott are the centre partnership.
The back three sees Rebekah O’Loughlin and Catherine Richards line-up either side of full-back Paige Randall.
On the bench there are a number of familiar faces from last season’s squad with prop Danyelle Dinapoli and backs Rafiuke Taylor and Elin Huxtable preparing to make on impact when called upon.
Cardiff Blues Women: Paige Randall, Catherine Richards, Molly Philpott, Hannah Bluck, Rebekah O’Loughlin, India Berbillion, Kierra Deeks; Jordan Hopkins, Kim Jones, Cerys Hale, Liliana Podpadec, Charlie Mundy, Shona Powell-Hughes, Abbie Flemming (c), Georgia Evans
Replacements: Bronnie Jones, Lily Snape, Danyelle Dinapoli, Emily Maisey, Kira Philpott, Niamh Tinman, Elin Huxtable, Rafiuke Taylor
Last season saw Ospreys Women win the Women’s Regional Championship, and if their performance at the Regional Super 12s is anything to go by, they’ll be the team to beat once again.
However, hopefully Cardiff Blues Women can stay hot on their heels and push them all the way, potentially improving on the second place finish last season. Come on Cardiff!