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Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off

The 2019 Welsh Varsity arrives at Principality Stadium on Wednesday

Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off

Both the women’s and men’s sides from Cardiff and Swansea Universities will take to the big Principality Stadium stage as the 2019 Welsh Varsity takes centre stage on Wednesday.

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The 23rd edition of the famous all-day sporting event concludes with two big clashes at the home of Welsh rugby.

First at 4.30pm Cardiff and Swansea’s women’s sides will do battle on the hallowed turf. Then at 7.30pm the men’s outfits will follow suit as they compete for the big prize.

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Cardiff University won last season’s showpiece event at the Liberty Stadium with a thrilling 23-15 victory over their rivals and their captain Tom Wilson is confident his side can retain their crown.

“We’ve had a good year on the back of getting promoted the season before,” said the mechanical engineering student.

“We struggled in the first part of the campaign adapting to the quicker pace in a more physical league, but as the season has gone by we’ve adapted and picked up some big scalps at home.

“We’ve managed to finish above the likes of Loughborough and Nottingham Trent.

“It’s been a really successful season. We’ve really tested ourselves this year and come across a better calibre of opponents which has pushed us on as a team.

“I’ve played two Varsity matches at the Liberty Stadium where I’ve won one and lost one. It’s nice to come back as it’s my last year.

“I’ve never played at the Principality Stadium before and I don’t think many people get the opportunity to. It’s a massive opportunity for everyone.

“Swansea are an unknown quantity and we don’t know much about them at all. They probably don’t know much about us either so it adds to the excitement.

“We’re just making sure we control what we control and we will be going into the game at 100 per cent. It would be great to end with a win.”

Swansea are one division below BUCS Super League outfit Cardiff, but have enjoyed a very successful season as they target promotion via the end of season play-offs.

Unfortunately on the same day their fierce rivalry with Cardiff is scheduled to be rekindled, Swansea have been booked in to play a BUCS Super Rugby play-off final against Nottingham Trent.

It’s a huge game as the winner of that fixture will play in BUCS’ top rugby league next season.

It means Swansea will field what they describe as a Barbarians-style team for the Varsity match.

In the women’s match, Cardiff captain Molly Danks insists her side have been inspired by Wales’ recent Grand Slam success and that has made them extra excited for the showpiece event.

“It’s going to be a great game and it’s going to be great to play at the Principality Stadium again,” said Danks.

“We were watching the Grand Slam and we can’t wait. For many of the girls it will be their first time.

“Some of us have played here before. We will be playing at the same ground that internationals have played on. It’s an incredible opportunity.

“Swansea are a great team. We’re going into the unknown a little this year.

“They got promoted last year. Normally we play them twice in a year but this year we haven’t.

“I won my first Varsity but lost the last two years so I’m hoping to leave on a win.”

Swansea women’s captain Jess Mccreoi believes the crowd is in for a treat and has promised her side will play entertaining rugby.

“The season as a whole has been quite difficult as we have been promoted meaning we’ve played teams like Exeter and Cardiff Met who’ve been in the Premiership for the last five years,” she said.

“But we like to play entertaining rugby. We like to throw the ball about and we have incredible speed out wide especially in our back three so we like to use them. We’re quite a small team but we are physical.

“We like to play so it will be free running rugby.”

You can watch the 2019 Welsh Varsity matches live online. Details below. 

(Welsh commentary – Women): Facebook S4C Chwaraeon (facebook.com/s4cchwaraeon)

Menywod Saesneg (English commentary – Women): https://youtu.be/v7Izsu2bpkM

Dynion Cymraeg (Welsh commentary – Men): Facebook S4C Chwaraeon (facebook.com/s4cchwaraeon)

Dynion Saesneg (English commentary – Men): https://youtu.be/jPdpw5axn4c

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Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
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Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
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Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off
Preview: 2019 Welsh Varsity set for kick-off