Bridgend Ravens' quest to stay in the Principality Premiership continues with a home game against Llanelli on Saturday evening (5:30pm).
It wasn't the result that Bridgend hoped for last weekend at Bedwas but having trailed 31pts to 10, Bridgend clawed themselves back to within seven to earn what could turn out to be a vital bonus point. The Ravens have six league games remaining and have destiny very much in their own hands.
Saturday's visitors are a rejuvenated Llanelli side. They've won their last three league games to move out of the relegation zone. They have just three league games left; against the Ospreylian trio of Bridgend, Neath and Swansea in their own bid to stay in Wales' top semi professional tier. Their last outing was an impressive 25pts to 20 win over RGC at Parc y Scarlets. This followed bonus point wins against Cross Keys (53pts to 12) and Aberavon (35pts to 17). They have three league games left against Bridgend, away, and Neath and Swansea at home.
The reverse fixture earlier in the season was handsomely won by Llanelli. A Cai Evans penalty was all that the visitors had to show for their efforts as Llanelli romped home for five converted tries and a 35pts to 3 victory. The sides met three times last season with Bridgend winning two of them, a home success by 27pts to 18 and a victory at Parc y Scarlets 22pts to 25. The other won by Llanelli 23pts to 18.
Bridgend name seventeen products of the local development pathway in their matchday squad. Owen Howe, Caine Woolerton and Dewi Cross make up Bridgend's back three. Jamie Murphy moves into the centre to pair up with captain Nathan Edwards. Cai Evans and Chris Williams are selected at half back.
The Ravens name Jordan Collier, Tom Morgan and Adam O'Driscoll in their back row. James Little and Ben Jones are partnered in the second row. Ollie Evans, Gareth Harvey and Moldovan Gheorghe Gajion comprise the front row.
There's more local talent on Bridgend's replacement bench which includes Ospreys Academy star Harri Morgan who debuted in last seasons corresponding fixture, crossing for two tries from the replacements bench. More of the same would go down well with the Ravens faithful this time around as the battle for Premiership survival heads toward its concluding chapter.
Bridgend Ravens XV:
15. Owen Howe (Maesteg Harlequins)
14. Caine Woolerton (Bridgend Athletic)
13. Nathan Edwards - capt (Maesteg Harlequins)
12. Jamie Murphy (Pencoed)
11. Dewi Cross (Pencoed)
10. Cai Evans (Cowbridge)
9. Chris Williams (Llanharan)
1. Ollie Evans (Haverfordwest)
2. Gareth Harvey (Kenfig Hill)
3. Gheorghe Gajion (Bulavra Taganrog)
4. James Little (Llantrisant)
5. Ben Jones (Kenfig Hill)
6. Tom Morgan (Bridgend Athletic)
7. Adam O'Driscoll (Heol y Cyw)
8. Jordan Collier (Tonmawr)
Replacements: 16. Owen Thomas (Porthcawl) 17. Owen Jordan (Glynneath) 18. Cai Lewis (Tondu) 19. Owain Lloyd (Cardiff Harlequins) 20. Dafi Davies (Llantwit Major) 21. Harri Morgan (Bryncethin) 22. Morgan Jones (Pencoed) 23. Stuart Floyd Ellis (Bridgend Athletic)
Just a reminder, that there's live music in Sadlers Bar following Saturday's game from Dual Control from 7pm.