Cardiff RFC head coach Steve Law has named his first matchday squad since March 2020 as London Welsh come to the Arms Park for a pre-season friendly on Saturday, 1pm kick-off.
Only one player who took the field at Aberavon 17 months ago remains in the starting XV as Morgan Allen once again captains the side from number eight, surrounded by a mix of new signings, Cardiff Academy prospects and permit players.
The Academy’s Theo Bevacqua packs down at loosehead prop, joined by two arrivals from Llandovery in the form of Alun Rees and Llyr Green in the front row, while Sean Moore and James Richards form a new signing partnership at second row. Alex Everett returns from a serious ankle injury at blindside flanker while another Academy member in Ethan Fackrell starts on the openside.
Liam Free is on permit from Fairwater at scrum-half alongside new signing Jack Maynard at fly-half, while Academy prospect Ryan Wilkins and new signing Tom Hoppe form the centre duo. Ryan Edwards brings experience to the wing with Academy members Jake Thomas and Jacob Beetham joining him in the back three.
The bench will largely be introduced during pre-arranged rotations at half-time, with Academy prop duo Rhys Barratt and Nathan Evans joining Dale Rogers, on permit from Bedwas, as front row cover. New signings Gareth Allen and Rory Bartle will form the new second row partnership, while Nathan Hudd and Academy member Evan Lloyd will cover the back row.
Rory Harries, also on loan from Bedwas, is the scrum-half option, while Barney Nightingale and new signing Dafydd Smith will cover the centres. James Beal will come on as a winger and Academy member Cameron Winnett will be introduced as a full-back.
Cardiff RFC: Jacob Beetham, Ryan Edwards, Tom Hoppe, Ryan Wilkins, Jake Thomas, Jack Maynard, Liam Free; Theo Bevacqua, Alan Rees, Llyr Green, James Richards, Sean Moore, Alex Everett, Ethan Fackrell, Morgan Allen (c)
Replacements: Dale Rodgers, Rhys Barrett, Nathan Evans, Gareth Allen, Rory Bartley, Nathan Hudd, Evan Lloyd, Rory Harris, Barney Nightingale, Dafydd Smith, James Beal, Cameron Winnett