Two weeks ago the Black & Ambers were outplayed by a strong Llanelli team at Rodney Parade but Saturday gives them a chance for revenge as they go in search of a place in the final of the league play-offs. So many players were not at their best in that game and the coaching team was dismayed by the number of errors and some poor decision making. It could be that the players’ minds were elsewhere but that should not now be the case and they should now play with confidence as we all look to the future.
Llanelli will bring a good team as always and our wide pitch will suit them as they play a fifteen man game and are prepared to spread the ball from anywhere. They finished fourth in Tier two but their current form would put them nearer the top of the table. I’m sure that we will see a fast, open game as both sides will look to play a high tempo, running game.
James Little comes into the second row at the expense of club captain Adam Brown and he deserves a start after his last two appearances. Henry Palmer gets the nod at hooker and Dan Mock comes in at six after an all-action performance against Caerleon on Sunday. Reuben Tucker starts at eight following an injury in training to Rhys Jenkins. Ryan James and Matt O’Brien are paired at half-back and should give the team the control that is required while Chay Smith and Tom Pascoe have the job of containing the dangerous Llanelli centres. Wes Cunliffe, Jon Morris and Geraint O’Driscoll are the back three and let’s hope that we can supply them with some good ball.
Newport: Nicky Boyce, Henry Palmer, Garin Harris, James Little, Dan Partridge, Dan Mock, Kyle Tayler, Reuben Tucker, Ryan James, Matt O’Brien, Wes Cunliffe, Tom Pascoe, Chay Smith, Jon Morris, Geraint O’Driscoll.
Replacements: Evan Whitson, Matt Prosser, Tom Piper, Adam Brown, Lennon Greggains, Owen Davies, Tom Riley, Llywarch Ap Myrddin.
Referee: Gareth Newman
AR1: Elgan Williams
AR2: Stuart Kibble
AR3: Gerald Davies
PR: Gareth Simmonds
Kick off 2:30