Cardiff’s opening Indigo Group Premiership game of the 2021/22 season could be postponed as the Blue and Blacks’ first team calls on the Rags squad after the South African travel saga.
With Dai Young’s squad missing 32 players due to isolation, plus seven injured, one suspended and three more doubtful as they manage knocks, they will turn to the academy and possibly some semi-professionals in the hope of fulfilling the Heineken Champions Cup game against Toulouse.
As things stand each of Rhys Barratt, Iestyn Harris, Nathan Evans, Will Davies-King, Rhys Anstey, Sam Moore, Alex Mann, Gwilym Bradley and Alun Lawrence, who have all featured for the Rags this season, would be with the first team, while Thomas Davies, Evan Yardley, Alun Rees and Ollie Drake could be called on as cover.
Then in the backs Ethan Lloyd, Dan Fish, Ryan Wilkins, Ioan Evans, Cameron Winnett, Theo Cabango, Jake Thomas and Jacob Beetham have all appeared in the Premiership Cup but would be with the first team.
Adding to the trouble for the Rags is a fairly lengthy injury list among the semi-professional squad with Sean Moore, Gareth Allen, Nathan Hudd, Morgan Allen, Tom Habberfield, Barney Nightingale, George Gasson and Ryan Edwards currently sidelined, plus James Richards being suspended while Rory Bartle has not yet been seen in a competitive game since early October.
With plenty of spare weekends between now and the end of the season, a season which is scheduled to finish as early as the start of April as it stands, a re-arranged game should not be too much trouble for either team as Llanelli could also lose players to the Scarlets who are in a similar position to Cardiff.