Home-grown talents rewarded with new contracts

7 May 2019
Home-grown talents rewarded with new contracts
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Seven of the Scarlets' home-grown players have signed new contracts with the region.

Wing Ioan Nicholas, props Javan Sebastian, Rhys Fawcett and Steff Thomas, back-rowers Tom Phillips and Shaun Evans and hooker Dafydd Hughes have all agreed fresh deals.

Ioan Nicholas has already played 42 times in the senior team, including 19 appearances during a breakthrough 2018-19 season for the 21-year-old.

A former Wales Under-20s cap, the Pontyberem product has scored seven tries this term and has been a regular choice in an international-studded back division.

Carmarthen Quins product Javan Sebastian, 24, returned to the region in 2016 after a spell with Glasgow Warriors.  The tight-head was part of the Scarlets A team that reached the final of the inaugural Celtic Cup and made his Guinness PRO14 debut off the bench against Toyota Cheetahs in February.

Rhys Fawcett, 22, is another former Wales Under-20s front-rower who has come through the age-grade system. Hailing from Pembrokeshire, he has made six appearances in the PRO14 and featured in the matches against Edinburgh and Benetton this season.

Loose-head prop Steff Thomas has made three replacement appearances for Scarlets in the Anglo-Welsh Cup.  The Newcastle Emlyn product has been recovering from a knee injury this season.

Tom Phillips (pictured) made his regional debut in 2015 and went on to make three appearances in that season’s European Cup.

His leadership qualities were to the fore as he captained Wales Under-20s to the Six Nations Grand Slam in 2016 and then at the Junior World Championships that year. The 23-year-old from Llanelli has played 20 times in a Scarlets jersey.

Former Wales Under-20s flanker Shaun Evans is another who has come through the Academy ranks. The Felinfoel product has made six Scarlets appearances, making his PRO14 debut against Edinburgh last season.

Llandovery’s Daf Hughes made his European bow for the Scarlets in this season’s Champions Cup clash with Racing 92 in Paris. A Grand Slam winner with Wales Under-20s in 2016, he crossed for a try in the away PRO14 victory over Southern Kings.

We are extremely proud of our ability to produce home-grown talent at the Scarlets and it’s great that another batch of local players have committed to the region, said Scarlets general manager of rugby Jon Daniels.

We have seen how Ioan has taken his opportunity this season, he has been outstanding, while others are knocking on the door.

“It is great to see the Academy production line continuing to work so well for the Scarlets and we hope to see all of them featuring regularly in the jersey over the coming years.”