1st XV Match Preview V Ebbw Vale (h) Sat 15/08/2015 

 

By Glyn Barlow

At last the waiting is over and we have rugby at Billesley again.

Our welcome visitors are Ebbw Vale from the Principality Premiership and as ever the prospect of an Anglo Welsh encounter is one to be savoured.

You can be sure that the Steelmen will be providing just the tough sort of challenge Moseley want having finished the regular season in second place before losing out in the final to Pontypridd 28-14.

As it Moseley’s challenge isn’t big enough the men from Gwent will have inside knowledge on rugby at Billesley courtesy of their new assistant forwards Coach one Mike Powell, formally of this parish. While we are sure Mike will get a warm welcome back, we are equally sure this time red & black supporters won’t be wishing he is on the winning side.

In addition to Mike Vale have made a number of other new signings who will all be looking to impress including back 3 player David Williams a colleague of our new back Rhys Williams Leicester Tigers, centre Dom Franchi who returns from Newport along with prop Ian George from Newbridge. Guiding the squad will be new Director of Rugby and former Wales centre Nigel Davies.

Saturday’s game represents the first outing of the season for Ebbw Vale while Moseley will have at least had the opportunity to shake the cobwebs out with a game against Stourbridge last Friday. The score? Well let’s just say quite a lot v not quite so much as it was never about points on the board with both teams taking the opportunity to roll significant numbers of substitutions in and out to give opportunities to triallists and test out various playing combinations.

It’s very difficult, if not pointless, to reach any overall conclusions about the game but the coaches will have learnt areas that still need attention such as restarts and the lineout and those areas that could become strengths for the team to play to. Certainly the opening 20 minutes boded very well with incisive running and handling from the new backline.

I’m sure both management and supporters will be looking for the squad to build on this performance as they ready themselves for the Championship campaign