Aberystwyth RFC head coach targets top-two finish this season

Aberystwyth RFC head coach Iestyn Thomas looks back on a successful season with better to come

Tuesday 21st June 2022 12:41 pm
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Aberystwyth won 15 of their 21 games played last season
Aberystwyth v Gorseinion 2022
Aberystwyth won 15 of their 21 games played last season (Mike Binks )

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As in most other aspects of life, Covid brought its opportunities and challenges. The season was essentially broken into two halves – a locally based league which led to a knockout tournament culminating in the Principality Stadium, a national league with no promotion or relegation with games being played either home or away, and then the West Wales Cup sometimes known as the Pembrokeshire Cup.

The season started with warm up games against the Drovers and Carmarthen Quins before a keenly contested win against Brecon – all away.

The season then commenced properly with the local league due to Covid restrictions which culminated in us winning the league and continuing on our journey to a possible cup final.

We beat Bethesda, Bon-y-maen but then lost narrowly to Treorchy in the quarter finals of the WRU Plate Competition.

The shortened Division 1 West league led to us coming 4th behind Llangenech, Newcastle Emlyn, and Hendy. We also reached the final of the Pembrokeshire Cup.

Our aims and objectives at the start of the season were to have a good run in the two cups and to finish in the top three of the leagues – so a quarter final and a final, and 4th place in the league by virtue of a postponed and cancelled game were pretty much on target.

Our final playing tally was played 21, won 15 and lost six.

What is so exciting about Aberystwyth in this coming season is that the Aber 1st XV is an incredibly young team averaging 22 years of age, who are improving game by game and season by season. Without any arrogance, we believe it possible to finish in the top two next season and seek promotion.

One of our strengths this year has also been the re-formation of a 2nd XV, which in its first year got to the final of the 2nd XV West Wales Cup in just five months.

It also allows a platform for players who may have had a year or two off to re-engage with rugby and challenge for the 1st XV. The club would genuinely extend a warm welcome to any aspirational player who wants to use Aberystwyth as a stepping-stone to the very top.

This season the club was ably led by Arwel Lloyd as captain and Mathew Hughes as vice.

Training will start on Tuesday, 12 July with myself and Ifan Thomas again at the helm when we will embark upon our adventure into season 22/23. Please come and join us.

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