Pembrokeshire rugby previews for Saturday, September 23rd (2.30pm):


Narberth v Rhydyfelin

It was a great result for The Otters in Beddau last week - but there have still been changes from Sean Gale and co for today.

Jonathan Rogers unsurprisingly keeps his place after being the match winner in the valleys, but winger Ryan Davies, scrum half Lewis Gibby, and flankers Dewi Williams and Tom Powell all come into the starting XV.

New boys Rhydyfelin have lost two of their first three in the Championship, with their only success coming at home to Skewen.

At home, The Otters will be expected to get the verdict.

Narberth: Ianto Griffiths, Ryan Davies, Kieran Jones, Paul Davies, Jack Parkinson, Jonathan Rogers, Lewis Gibby, Bradley Davies, Dan Smith, Tom Slater, Ryan Banner, Alex Jenkins, Dewi Williams, Tom Powell, Rich Rees.

Replacements: Rhys Davies, Jake Simm, Sean Jenkins, Rhys Lane, Jake Jenkins.

Division One West:

Gowerton v Tenby United

Tenby’s home loss to Penclawdd last Saturday would have hurt The Seasiders, after being so formidable at Heywood Lane last season.

The early optimism from their opening day win against Llanelli Wanderers has since been wiped out with two losses, and they will need to be back on song tomorrow to avoid another loss here.

Indeed, it won’t be easy away to a Gowerton side who will also be smarting after Aberystwyth ended their unbeaten start on Saturday.

Tycroes v Crymych

After being rained off last week, this is a game Crymych badly need a win.

Neither of these sides have a point to their name thus far, and if The Preseli Men are in the same position come 4.30pm today, alarm bells will start ringing.

The visitors have lost talented back Jake Jenkins to Narberth for the afternoon, but should coaches Randall Evans and Neil Machin have the luxury of travelling with a strong squad, they will be confident of getting their season going here.

Division Two West:

Fishguard v Loughor

The Seagulls are up and running after a hard fought win in Llanybydder last Saturday, and will be keen to build on that today.

Again, I expect their pack will be the decisive factor, although the goal-kicking of No 10 Alun George this season has also proved vital – with his 11 points from the boot critical last week.

Loughor however, arrive on the back of hammering Amman United last Saturday, and are no strangers to physicality.

Few quarters will be given at The Moors.

St Clears v Carmarthen Athletic

Inspired by a hat trick of tries from Shane Morgan, St Clears hammered Pontyberem last week to prove they are not in Division Two to make up the numbers.

Again, Mike Jones’ side will want to prove formidable at home, against an Athletic side who came off the wrong side of a 6-3 scoreline in a mud-bath with Whitland last week.

The home pitch will be heavy after the weather this past week, and Athletic will again face another real dogfight today.

Whitland v Llanybydder

I suspect last week's ugly win over Athletic would have delighted the Whitland coaches.

They showed in the first two games they could put points on the board, but The Borderers have lost too many tight contests in recent seasons.

But they showed they could dig deep, and will fancy their chances of a fourth straight win at home to Llanybydder today.

The home side have made five changes from last Saturday, with Josh Thomas, Scott Candler, and Thomas Parry all coming into the backline - and Tomos Evans and Ben Kirk starting in the front five.

Whitland: Scott Newton, Liam Price, Alun Howells, Josh Thomas, Scott Candler, Nico Setaro, Thomas Parry, Mike Ryan, Marc Jones, Tomos Evans, Ben Kirk, Raff Williams, Danny Evans, Ryan Michael, Jack Mason.

Replacements: Kevin Allen, Aaron Mayne, Dai Ebsworth, Adam Davies, Johnny Thomas.

Division Three West A:

Aberaeron v Laugharne

Laugharne’s only clash thus far was a thrilling 31-31 draw at Milford, and they will again have to perform to well on the road to pick up something tomorrow.

With Aled Rees and Owain Thomas half backs – their backs should again have the service to threaten out wide, but Aberaeron gave Haverfordwest a stern test before losing 18-7 last time out, and as always, will be a tough proposition at home.

A result here would cement a solid start to the season for The Cocklemen.

Cardigan v St Davids

These sides met four times in league and cup action last season, with The Teifisiders resounding winners on each occasion.

And after starting their season with back to back wins over The Quins and Tregaron, the home side will be strongly tipped to notch a third successive league success here.

The Saints have been buoyed lately by a home win over Llangwm - and although exited in the National Bowl in Llangadog last week, travelled with a full squad and were competitive for long spells.

But you feel if they are to pick up further league points, it is their home games they will target most, and this could be a tough trip for Rhys ‘Loshin’ Price and co.

Cardigan: Ben Rogers, William James Delve, Justin James Noble, Emyr Harries (captain), Sion James, Dion James, Osian Rees, Scott Payne, Luke Palmer Davies, Ben Hughes, Osian Rees, Dean Harries, Sion Hughes, Tom Taylor, Colin Davies.

Replacements: Ben Penny, Richard Jones, Max Evans, Gruffydd Lewis, Tomos Jones.

Llangwm v Haverfordwest

If there is one game where The Wasps are guaranteed to give everything, it’s this one.

The home side will again test the temperament of the visitors, and I suspect they would have been delighted with the rainfall yesterday, contributing to an inevitably heavy Pill Parks surface this afternoon.

Josh Hicks as impressed thus far with his ball carrying, while Stephen Inward will need to be dead eye with the boot if the home side are to spring somewhat of a surprise.

But as always, The Blues start the derby as clear favourites, and Bruce Evans will know if his side can keep their composure and discipline, they should notch a second league win.

Milford Haven v Pembroke

It has been a great start for The Scarlets, with ten points from ten in the league, and a National Bowl win at Haverfordwest last week to boot.

They are scoring tries both via the pack and out wide, and still have Toby Smith and Dom Colman to return from the win at Merlins Bridge last week.

But this is a real early test of their title credentials.

Little can be read into Milford’s ill-fated trip to Cefneithin last week, and at The Obs at least, I expect them to be a match for anyone this season.

They have been susceptible to conceding tries out wide so far, and I expect Alan McClelland’s men will want to keep this tight.

It’s often a cliché that games are won or lost up front, and I envisage an almighty battle between the two packs. The potential head to head between respective No 8’s Sam Smith and Mark Wonnacott will also be worth a watch.

Pembroke Dock Quins v Tregaron

The Quins have lost both their opening games, but there have been signs of promise.

They pushed Cardigan all the way on the opening day, and were a lot more competitive against rivals Pembroke than the final score suggested.

So Ossie Boswell will want his side to have a real go at a Tregaron team who won at Llangwm on the opening day, before being humbled at home by Cardigan.

As so often the case with the mid Wales side, how strong they travel will have a big say in the outcome.

Likewise, if The Quins are at full strength, a rarity in recent seasons, there is no reason captain Thomas Doyle and co cannot get a first win of the campaign.

Swalec Bowl Round One:

Crymych 2nds v Newcastle Emlyn 2nds

Re-arranged from last week, the second XV’s of Crymych and Newcastle Emlyn will meet his Saturday.

And there is now a bit of added spice to the tie, with the winners potentially having a local derby against Cardigan in round two (Should the Teifisiders beat Ferryside on September 30th).

Crymych should be well prepared, as under former first XY coach Robin Davies, they have played games in pre-season and will fancy their chances at home.

Emlyn appear more of an unknown quantity, but being a Championship side, you would like to think they boast strong back up.

An interesting game awaits.