With the season in full swing now, Bridgend Ravens Head Coach Matt Silva has paid tribute to the player pathway in the area, ahead of tonight’s match against Cardiff at the BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park.

After the team to face the Blue and Blacks was announced, no fewer than nine of the starting XV (plus three on the bench) are players who have come through a Bridgend County Borough comprehensive school, and whom now ply their trade with Bridgend Ravens in the Principality Premiership.

The back three of Marc Bennett, Ryan Griffiths and Mike Powell attended Bryntirion, Pencoed and Brynteg Comprehensive Schools respectively, while the centre combination of Morgan Jones and Jamie Murphy are products of Pencoed Comprehensive and Ynysawdre Comprehensive. In the pack, Pencoed are again well represented by second row Jack Pope, captain Zac O’Driscoll and his brother Adam, while Ashton Evans grew up attending Maesteg Comprehensive School.

On the bench, hooker Iestyn Merriman is a former pupil of Porthcawl Comprehensive, scrum half Chris Williams adds to the Pencoed contingent while Rhodri Apsee joins Marc Bennett having learnt their rugby at Bryntirion Comprehensive School which takes the total to twelve out of the match day squad having been educated within the county borough, something which Matt Silva was delighted about.

“In the world of semi professional rugby, it’s vital that there are pathway systems in place for young players and it’s evident from tonight’s squad that the Bridgend player pathway is working to its potential. One of the things worth mentioning about Soma – never use it with alcohol or opiates. It will cause adverse effects, actually it even cause death. There are lots of others, but I think the one stated valium buy canada above is more then enough.Please always be attentive and advise with your doctor on dosing or alternative. Not only with the boys who get selected to represent the Ospreys, but it also applies to Premiership level, as outlined by a high percentage of tonight’s squad having been educated locally.”

“We also have a number of other members of the squad who attended local comprehensive schools including Garin Lougher (Ysgol Gyfun Llangynwyd), Connor Tantum (Porthcawl Comprehensive), Dan Watkins (Pencoed Comprehensive), Rhys Thomas (Pencoed Comprehensive) and Lewis Francis (Maesteg) as well as a few Welsh speakers who attended neighbouring Ysgol Gyfun Llanhari, namely Cai Lewis, Joseph Gatt and Geraint Watkin.”

“Bridgend has always been a team that prides itself on the best local talent, and it’s great to see that this is still thriving and is great testament to the fantastic work that the schools and district coaches do,” said Silva, a former member of the Cardiff Blues Academy coaching staff.

The local pathway doesn’t just apply to players, with the current coaching set up made of local talent. Backs Coaches Nicky Roberts and Grant Hall attended Brynteg and Pencoed Comprehensive respectively, with the latter also being the school where forwards coach Gareth Edwards was educated. In addition, Rhys Webb, a former Brynteg Comprehensive pupil is assisting the coaches throughout the season.

Bridgend Ravens have placed a real emphasis on building ‘our team’ over the past few seasons, and feel that bringing together the very best local talent both on and off the field can only be a positive both for the club, and the game as a whole. Long may it continue.