Howard Evans (Carmarthen Quins Programme Notes)

We welcome Carmarthen Quins tonight for the penultimate group match of the Principality Premiership Cup.

Changes to the format announced this week mean that the knockout stages will now include quarter-finals, and while Aberavon and Llandovery are guaranteed to qualify though, Carmarthen Quins are looking odds-on to join them with Bridgend and Swansea battling it out for the fourth spot from the West pool.

However, when will these final rounds be played? My guess is May 2022, when squads will have changed drastically due to injuries, retirements, transfers and regional calls.

Still, we must get on with it and Aberavon stand two points ahead of Llandovery with the Drovers away to Bridgend tonight and then comes the return between Llandovery and Aberavon on November 27.

Tonight may well see two friends and ‘veteran’ fly halves in opposition – one (Craig Evans) off the pitch and the other (Aled David Llewellyn Thomas) on it – if he survives the trip back from Bermuda.

As well as Craig, another ‘old man’, lock Haydn Pugh will be here. Haydn, a North Walian, has been a wonderful servant to the Mighty Quins, even if he did play a bit for Neath long ago!

The Quins play good rugby and even though they cannot move up the table, they will be doing their utmost to upset the ‘Wizards’.

We saw a good match last Saturday when Bridgend went closer than the 36-15 score suggests, but once more Aberavon took five points.

Tonight we welcome Gwyn Morris, the schoolmaster from Whitchurch in Cardiff, who I personally think is the best referee in Premiership rugby and one of the fittest.

Gwyn is yet another North Walian to see sense and come South, though I suspect he was just a youngster who later turned out for Cardiff HSOB as a flanker. From one who played No 8 for the same club, I just wish that I had played with him.

Gwyn ‘calls them as he sees them’ and you can’t be fairer than that.

Let us have a fine sporting match.