After seeing him impressing with the Welsh Academicals, we signed Toby Fricker for the 2017/18 season and, from the start of that campaign, it was clearly evident that we had signed a player that would be the “talk of the town”. Toby has been ever present in the Ebbw side since joining us and this season he has played every minute of every game. His sheer aggression and passion has not only been influential but infectious in everything good about Ebbw this year. It is with great pride and pleasure that we announce that Toby has signed a two and a half year contract for English Premiership side Bristol Bears from today.
Toby said, “My time at Ebbw has been brilliant and I have enjoyed every second of it. The players, staff, coaches, officers and fans have been unbelievable over the past two seasons and it will be sad to say goodbye, but I am excited and grateful for this opportunity and cannot wait to get stuck in. I will look forward to coming to support Ebbw in the future! Thanks again to the boys, staff, coaches, officers and fans.”
We would like to thank Toby for his commitment and effort over the past two seasons and would like to wish him all the luck and success in this exciting new venture.
Ebbw won a tense St David’s Day thriller at ECP, beating Pontypridd 17-16.
The match report will appear here.
It was with great sadness that we learned, from his son Kim, that Jack Lawrence, our scrum-half of the early 50s, has died aged 92. Club scribe and historian, the inimitable Roy ‘Rel’ Lewis, remembers him well, and said, “Jack Lawrence was one of our greatest scrum-halves and an important member of the Ebbw Vale side that won Welsh Championships in the 1950s. He also played in the Ebbw Vale-Newbridge team that beat the South African Universities (The Sables) before a packed ground at Ebbw Vale in 1957.”
Jack’s former team-mate Francis Matthews was saddened when told the news and commented, “I was privileged to have played for Ebbw Vale in a period when we were such a good side and as a backrow forward benefited from such an exciting player as Jack who would break away at great speed with me in support. Someone once said before a game, ‘How many tries is Jack going to make for you today?’”
In 1960 a Past v Present game was arranged and Jackie Lawrence once again stood out. A real Ebbw Vale clubman and an outstanding scrum-half.
Our thoughts are with his family.
Please note the following fixture changes:
Ebbw Vale v Llandovery Thursday 14/03/19 ko 7:15pm (moved from 23/03/19)
Ebbw Vale v Neath Saturday 27/04/19 ko 2:30pm (rearranged postponed game).
There have been some changes in responsibilities for officers in the club. A new role has been created to deal with liaison between the mini and junior section and the senior team and management. Ian James has agreed to take on this role and as a result Karl Offers has taken over as club secretary.
Ian has been club secretary for 8 years starting at the time of the formation of Steelmen Rugby Limited and his efforts on behalf of the club since that time are much appreciated.
Karl, already known for his role as match day announcer, has been instrumental in creating Friends of Ebbw Vale.
A last play penalty try deep in injury time ended Ebbw’s cup campaign at a wet and windy Wern.
The club are able to confirm that back 5 forward Jonathan Davies has completed his transfer to Bedwas RFC as he looks to gain more game time. Jon, having initially impressed in the Fosters Cup on permit from Ynysddu, joined the club and impressed to the degree that he was voted Most Promising Player by the supporters that season. Since then he has suffered with injuries, and a recent change of job has limited his training time with the squad. Having recovered from several niggling injuries Jon has decided that, at 26 years old, he wanted to play every week. We would like to take the opportunity to thank Jon for his efforts in the Red, Green and White and wish him every success at Bedwas.
Two of the long term injured returned to the field in Friday night’s epic encounter with RGC and all at the club were delighted to see Dom Franchi and Dai Langdon fully recovered from their respective injuries. Their return was timely with wing / centre Paul King ruled out with a concussion that was sustained in the final minute at Aberavon just prior to Christmas,and with Carl Mayer returning to South Africa this week. It is hoped that Carl will return to the club in a short period.
The remaining long term absentees, prop Joel Harries and second row Lance Randall are working diligently with the medical team to meet February returns to action.
Ebbw Vale will play Merthyr at the Wern in round 2 of the National Cup. This is a repeat of last season’s semi final, a close game won by Merthyr who went on to win the Cup.
The match is currently scheduled for 2:30 on January 26th.
The draw in full is as follows:
Ebbw Vale travel to Carmarthen on Saturday for the 1st round of the National Cup.
The squad can be seen here.
Following Saturday’s 14-all draw at Aberavon, Ebbw won 37-18 with a bonus point at Bedwas on Boxing Day.
More information can be found here.