Truro City posed exactly the sort of test Neil Warnock wants for his young Bluebirds.
The Cardiff City manager stood by the side of the away dug-out at Truro’s Treyew Road stadium and looked into the future.
Warnock is not convinced the Professional Under-23 League will give his budding full professionals the testing conditions they need and he has put in new rules for the team.
There are four under-23 fixtures every month, but he has decreed that in two of those Cardiff will field an under-18 team.
The young pros who are over 18 will then be faced with ‘friendly’ fixtures against adult opposition like Hereford FC, who are, like Truro, a National League club.
“It’s going to be like the old reserve leagues,” said under-23 coach Jarrad Harvey. “We are trying to get the boys playing against ex-pros, giving them exposure.
“Truro play National League football and were a good test. We have lads who have played three or four senior games, while they had players with hundreds of appearances behind them.”
Cardiff’s under-23 team now prepare for their fixture against St Austell on Tuesday, another difficult test.
Harvey praised senior pros Lee Tomlin, Anthony Pilkington and goalkeeper Lee Camp after they played for a Bluebirds XI at Truro City.
It was officially an under-23 line-up, but Warnock slotted three senior players into the team.
“The senior guys have been terrific, outstanding,” said Harvey, who works alongside Andy Legg with the under-23 players.
“It speaks volumes for them that they come in and are such an example for the younger players.”
Pilkington and Scottish defender Paul McKay scored the goals for Cardiff in a 2-0 win against Vanarama National League Truro City, while Camp kept a second successive personal clean sheet in pre-season fixtures.
He shut-out Taffs Well in a 3-0 City win on Friday and kept Truro out in Cornwall.
“They were good opposition and the lads did well in difficult conditions,” said Harvey. “We have another three fixtures to play in Cornwall and we are looking forward to the tests.
“This is a beautiful part of the World and we are looking forward to the week.”
Cardiff included trialists Brayden Shaw, a 21-year-old, and goalkeeper Matthew Hall, aged 20 and a player who went on for Camp after an hour. Both are from Bangor City.
Hall made an outstanding, full length save from Truro centre-forward Lloyd Gardner soon after going on and he, too, kept a personal clean sheet.
Ryan Pryce, a talented young midfield player from The New Saints, started for the young Bluebirds.
Pryce, 21, has impressed with Cardiff during his trial spell and all three will certainly be given more match time the remaining matches.
Cardiff pre-season fixtures
Friday 13: Taffs Well 0, Cardiff City (u-23) 3
Sunday 15: Truro City 0, Cardiff City (u-23) 2
Monday 16: Tavistock AFC v Cardiff City (Langsford Park, 7pm)
Tuesday 17: AFC St Austell v Cardiff City u-23 (Poltair Park, 7pm)
Wednesday 18: Bodmin Town v Cardiff City (Priory Park, 7pm).
Thursday 19: Porthleven FC v Cardiff City u-23 (Gala Parc, 7pm).
Friday 20: Torquay United v Cardiff City (Plainmoor, 7pm).
Saturday 21: Liskeard Athletic v Cardiff City u-23 (Lux Park, 2pm).
Wednesday 25: Rotherham United v Cardiff City (New York Stadium, 7.45pm).
Saturday 28: Burton Albion v Cardiff City (Pirelli Stadium, 2pm)
Tuesday 31: Greenock Morton v Cardiff City (Cappielow Park, 7.45pm)
Saturday 4 Cardiff City v Real Betis (Cardiff City Stadium, 5.15pm)