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‘We’ll keep fighting until the end of the season’

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Aled Thomas: confident Scarlets can finish as top Welsh side

SCARLETS outside half Aled Thomas says the West Wales side will fight to keep their place in the top half of the table despite the narrowest of defeats to the Ospreys on Boxing Day.
Despite the narrow defeat Scarlets remain at the top of the Guinness PRO12 table as we head into the New Year, only a point ahead Connacht in second place.
Scarlets will welcome Connacht to the Parc in the top of the table clash on Sunday, January 10, but will firstly need to secure a result against Cardiff Blues in the New Year clash at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park.
Speaking after the Boxing Day defeat Thomas said: “It was always going to be a tough game, little things went their way and they were more clinical in the end. Marginal errors fed them and they capitalised on them.
“Ospreys are a quality team, they’re a quality outfit, but we are as well I think. We have a strong squad here, we’ll keep fighting right until the end of the season to be in that top four or top two spot even.
“We’re taking it week by week, we showed today that we can more than compete. We need to get marginal errors out of our game and we’re definitely a match for any team.”
With eight wins from ten PRO12 games Scarlets have secured their place at the top of the table but know they have work to do to remain in the driving seat come the business end of the season.
Thomas went on to say: “We’re still a top of the league team, it doesn’t come through luck, we’ve deserved our right to be up there. We’ve put in some good performances in earlier on in the season.
“The Champions Cup campaign has been disappointing but in the last few weeks we’ve put a lot of things right where we could have, should have won games.”
Tickets are available now for the top of the table clash against Connacht, at Parc y Scarlets, on Sunday, January 10, kick-off 2.30pm.

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Community

Scarlets’ grassroots clubs show community spirit in delivering vital food packages

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Scarlets community clubs have been working together to help deliver vital food packages across the region.


Volunteers from grassroots clubs and WRU girls hubs across Ceredigion, Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire have been helping take the food packages to vulnerable members of society who are self-isolating during the Covid-19 pandemic.


The clubs have teamed up with the Scarlets Community Foundation — the charity arm of the Scarlets — and Carmarthen-based food wholesaler Castell Howell, while Scarlets players Osian Knott, Kieran Hardy, Ryan Conbeer and Jac Morgan have also lent their hand to the operation.


More than 300 packages were due to be delivered on Monday and Tuesday (April 6 & April 7), with the initiative highlighting that even without any action on the field, rugby clubs remain at the heart of their community.
Scarlets Community Foundation manager Caroline Newman said:  “We have been overwhelmed with the support that we have received from local clubs, the number of people prepared to volunteer to help the most vulnerable in our communities has been touching.


“People’s reasons for requesting packs have often been heart-wrenching and it really has made us appreciate what we have.


“The foundation has worked closely with Castell Howell to make sure the packages are ready to go to those whose need is greatest, managing to turn things around pretty quickly and I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved in making this happen, our funder, Castell Howell, all the clubs, our helpline volunteer and the foundation members.
“Great teamwork which has made me proud to be part of the fantastic community that rugby creates.”

Here are the rugby clubs and WRU girls rugby hubs taking part in the initiative

Aberaeron, Aberystwyth, Amman Utd, Ammanford, Burry Port, Betws, Bynea, Cardigan, Cefneithin, Felinfoel, Fishguard & Goodwick, Furnace Utd, Haverfordwest, Kidwelly, Llandeilo, Llandovery, Llandybie, Llanelli Wanderers, Llangennech, Llangwm, Merched Mynydd Mawr, Milford Haven, Narberth, New Dock Stars, Newcastle Emlyn, Neyland, Penybanc, Pontyates, St Clears, Stradey Sospans, Tenby Utd, Tumble, Tycroes, Whitland, Yr Hendy.

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Sport

Wales v Scotland postponed

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WALES’ Six Nations match at home to Scotland on Saturday has been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The two other Six Nation fixtures had already been postponed and no date has been confirmed to complete the 2020 Championship.

The Welsh Rugby Union had insisted earlier on Friday the game would “go ahead as planned”.

A WRU statement read: “The Welsh Rugby Union has maintained an open dialogue with, and continued to seek advice and direction from, the National Assembly for Wales and other stakeholders, including the Six Nations, on this fast-moving issue.

“Whilst medical advice remains consistent, we have decided that it is in the best interests of supporters, players and staff to fall in line with recent measures taken across the UK and global sports industries.

“The WRU would like to thank all parties for their counsel on the subject and will make further announcements with respect to rescheduling the fixture in the coming days.

“Every effort has been made to stage this game and we appreciate that individuals will have been inconvenienced. Given the fluid and unprecedented nature of this issue a postponement became the only viable option.”

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Sport

Domestic football at all levels in Wales suspended

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THE FOOTBALL Association of Wales has today (13 March) taken the decision to suspend domestic football at all levels in Wales with immediate effect until April  4 due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The intention at this time will be to resume the football schedule depending on the medical advice and conditions from the relevant authorities at that time.  

The FAW is fully aware of the impact this will have on the domestic game but the health and safety of all fans, players, volunteers and stakeholders are of paramount importance. 

The FAW will continue to monitor this situation on a day-by-day basis and will continue to provide updates when appropriate. 

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