Scarlets dominate Wales men’s U18s squad

Rob Lloyd Academy News, News

Eight of the Scarlets U18s title-winning squad have been named in a 26-strong group to travel to Parma in Italy for the 2024 U18 Men’s Six Nations Rugby Festival, which kicks off this week.

Prop Jac Pritchard, locks Will Evans and Sam Williams and back-rowers Keanu Evans, Dom Kossuth (pictured) and Deian Gwynne have been named by head coach Richie Pugh – a reward for their outstanding displays this season.

The third edition of the tournament, which sees Portugal and Georgia incorporated for the first time, opens on Saturday, March 30, with each side playing three 70-minute matches across the week.

Evans will be featuring in their second festival having played in last year’s competition.

The tournament serves as a key step on the development pathway for athletes and provides an opportunity for some of the brightest young talent in the game to feature on the international stage.

Wales face three 70-minute games across the tournament, taking on England (MD1 – Saturday 30th March, 17:45 kick-off), Portugal (MD2 Tuesday 3rd April, 11:00 kick-off) and France (MD3 Sunday 7th April, 13:15 kick-off).

“It’s an exciting squad who have prepped well,” said Pugh. “We’ve had a large squad in and it has been difficult to narrow it down just to 26 players because off the back of the regional programme there is a lot of talent in the U18s group.

“It’s good to see three RGC boys in the group while there is a heavy presence of Scarlets players on the back of a dominant regional campaign but it’s good to see a spread across the five academies represented in the squad.

“Our purpose as an 18s programme is to lay those foundations to help produce players for the U20s, regional and international players and I think we have done that so far and this is the next step on that journey for the boys to travel to Parma for the Six Nations festival.”Wales face heavy hitters England and France and newcomers Portugal but rather than being daunted by the challenge, Pugh said his squad are eager to face the challenge head on.

“This is what we want to expose the boys to. Up against some of the best teams that they can come across and England and France are definitely two of those top teams and Portugal are a new team which will offer the group a new challenge,” he said.

Wales U18’s Six Nations Festival men’s squad

Forwards – Dylan Alford (Coleg Llandrillo/RGC), Alex Bosworth (Hartpury/Gloucester), Tom Cottle (Castell Alun High School/RGC), Ruben Cummings (Hartpury/Gloucester), Keanu Evans (YGG Strade/Scarlets), Will Evans (Llandovery College/Scarlets), Deian Gwynne (Hartpury/Scarlets), Thomas Howe (YGG Glantaff/Cardiff), Caio James (Hartpury/Gloucester), Dylan James (Bridgend College/Ospreys). Ryan Jones (Hartpury/Dragons), Dom Kossuth (Coleg Sir Gar/Scarlets), Jac Pritchard (Coleg Sir Gar/Scarlets), George Tuckley (Monmouth School/Dragons), Sam Williams (Coleg Sir Gar/Scarlets)

Backs – Tom Bowen (Clifton College/Bristol Bears), Harrison Doe (Gower College /Ospreys), Sion Davies (YGG Glantaff/Cardiff Rugby), Lewis Edwards (YGG Gwyr/Ospreys), Steffan Emanuel (Millfield/Bath Rugby – CAPT). Jac Harrison (Beechen Cliff/Bath Rugby), Carwyn Jones (Llandovery College/Scarlets), Joseff Jones (YGG Glantaff/Cardiff Rugby), Stef Jac Jones (Hartpury/Scarlets). Tudur Jones (YGG Llangefni/RGC), Jack Woods (Monmouth School/Dragons)

Under-18 Men’s Festival Fixtures (All games streamed on WRU YouTube)
Matchday 1 (Saturday 30TH March)
KO 17:45 – England v Wales

Matchday 2 (Wednesday 3rd April)
KO 11:00 – Wales v PortugalMatchday 3 (Sunday 7th April)
KO 13:15 – France v Wales