Once Wales’ most capped rugby player, most prolific tryscorer and most decorated captain, Ieuan Evans was the wide man who always held centre stage. Now, he’s seeking to be at the hub of events in a different role – as a member of the Welsh Rugby Union’s council. Graham Thomas hears why. When Ieuan Evans lifted the 1994 Five Nations trophy as Wales captain, he wore the look of a man who knew the truth. His team had won the title, but they had just been beaten by England at Twickenham – a Grand Slam opportunity had been lost – and the skipper’s instinct was to reflect the mixed emotions he felt inside rather than dance to the tune of TV producers who wanted joyous celebration.
Melissa Courtney-Bryant came within a whisker of setting a new 1500m personal best on her first outdoor outing of 2020 on Tuesday night. The Welsh 3,000 and 5,000m record holder was in imperious form as she overcame a high quality field at the Paavo Nurmi Games in Finland. Courtney-Bryant produced a masterclass in front running before breaking the tape in a new meeting and stadium record of 4:03.69.
Mark Williams has jumped to the defence of snooker’s young brigade and called Ronnie O’Sullivan “disrespectful” for his criticisms of their standards. Wales’ former world champion saw his pursuit of a third title ended by O’Sullivan on Tuesday when the five-time champion won their quarter-final 13-10 at the Crucible. It was a clash between two of the game’s ageing legends with Williams now 45 and O’Sullivan 44. But it was a contest given more spice by O’Sullivan’s comments that levels of performance among the younger generation was so low that he would, “have to lose an arm and a leg to fall out of the top 50.”
Port Talbot Ladies head coach Hayley Williams admits there was a fair degree of apprehension before her players went back to training this month. After all, it had been a long time since the Welsh Premier Women’s League squad members had last got together for their twice weekly sessions. But thanks to a grant of just over £1,000 from the Be Active Wales Fund, the players are now back on the grass – although having to get used to new conditions and demands imposed by coronavirus restrictions.
Dan Jervis went to swimming’s world championships last year and failed to cope with the anxiety of expectation. Now, after lockdown and time spent out of the pool, he tells Graham Thomas he will be a calmer man heading towards next year’s Olympic Games. Dan Jervis is glad to be back in the pool, but the Olympic hopeful admits lockdown has altered his outlook to training, swimming, and even life itself. The Commonwealth Games silver medal winner from 2018 is part of the small group of 11 elite Welsh swimmers currently back in the water in Newport.
The draws have been made, the maps have been checked, and now Welsh football clubs are preparing for their summer stint in the sun. Matthew Burgess says the cards – as usual – are not stacked in the Welsh clubs’ favour, but one-game shoot-outs might yet enable the likes of Connah’s Quay and Barry Town United to make their mark. Anticipating how Welsh clubs will fare in European competitions is generally a difficult summer task at the best times, yet the ongoing impact of the coronavirus on Welsh football only serves to muddy the waters further. In football's new normal, all qualifying rounds are to be decided over one game and ties could be hosted at neutral venues - or determined without a ball even being played - should Covid restrictions dictate.
Alun Wyn Jones may be poised to become the most capped rugby player in history – but his first plan is to impress his new boss. The Wales captain is scheduled to pass Richie McCaw’s mark of 148 international caps this autumn, but his more immediate aim is to show new Ospreys coach Toby Booth the true meaning of staying power. Jones has been involved in his 18th senior pre-season routine with the Ospreys in recent days, but his first since Booth became head coach and the former London Irish chief says: “He’s at the start of his career for me.
Cymru Premier clubs Connah's Quay and Barry Town have learnt the identity of their respective European opponents later this month. Connah's Quay will face FK Sarajevo at home in what will be the Nomads' first ever UEFA Champions League qualifying tie, while Barry Town have been handed an away draw to Faroe Islanders RSI Runavík in the UEFA Europa League.
AFC Tavistock 0, Cardiff City 7 Hat-trick hero Gary Madine and playmaker Lee Tomlin teased and tormented hosts AFC Tavistock in the opening fixture of Cardiff City’s under-23 tour to Devon and Cornwall. Centre-forward Madine scored three times in the first 30 minutes, two of them created by the ever-dangerous Tomlin, who... Read More
Dai Sport are spending the week in Cornwall and Devon with Neil Warnock’s Cardiff City. Here is the fourth part of our pre-season diary. Watch out for part five tomorrow. Goalkeeper Lee Camp looks likely to leave Cardiff City during this transfer window, but he did the Bluebirds proud in their... Read More
Bobby Reid will achieve a boyhood dream when he makes his Premier League debut for Cardiff City in the new season. The boy from Bristol knows all about rivalry between his home city team, the Robins, and Cardiff’s Bluebirds. He was 10-years-old and already playing at Bristol City’s Academy when Lennie Lawrence’s... Read More
Bluebirds tour - the verdict. Terry Phillips was the only journalist to watch all five matches on Cardiff City’s week-long Cornish trip. Pre-season plaudits Man of the tour: Neil Warnock. Watching the gaffer’s man management skills at close quarters was a privilege. He also inter-acted with Bluebirds fans - and put himself... Read More
Joe Bennett can’t wait to see playmaker Lee Tomlin weaving his magic for the Bluebirds. Left-back Bennett and attacking player Tomlin were pals together at Bournemouth and were room-mates on away trips. “Tommo has that little bit of creativity that maybe we lacked as a team last season,” said Bennett after Cardiff... Read More
Bodmin Town 1, Cardiff City 3 Frenchman Loic Damour scored twice and Danish ace Kenneth Zohore headed a third in Cardiff City’s comfortable win at Bodmin Town in Cornwall. The Bluebirds, wearing their lime green away shirts and white shorts, followed their seven-goal success against AFC Tavistock on Monday with another victory... Read More