A talented teenager from Pontypridd has been signed by the Cardiff Blues first team, after he caught the eye of the coaches following a flair for the sport from a young age.
After success at the prestigious Blues training academy, Jarrod Evans, 18, will join the first team in the esteemed company of players such as Sam Warburton and Adam Jones.
While studying at Coleg y Cymoedd, Jarrod attended the Blues Academy where he developed his rugby skills under the watchful eye of expert coaches. The academy also ensured the learners were prepared academically should a career in rugby not materialise. The learners were encouraged to develop team work skills and determination which will support them to succeed in any future employment, professional rugby or university.
Speaking of his new appointment to the Blues first team, Jarrod said, “Rugby has always been special to me. I’ve played since a very young age and made so many good friends through it. At Coleg y Cymoedd we had a very strong squad and played some tough opposition from other colleges, which was great experience.
“The coaches kept us focussed on our fitness and the game and also encouraged us with the academic part of the course, stressing the importance of a good education. When I was approached by Cardiff Blues to sign up for them I couldn’t believe it, I’d never expected at 18 years to be in the squad playing alongside some of Wales’ greats – it’s a dream come true”.
<Jarrod’s passion for rugby started at his local club, where he has made his way from mini and junior ranks, to eventually play for the Pontypridd first team. The fly half’s flair and ability on the pitch have not gone unnoticed, as Jarrod has already been capped for Wales at under 18 level.
Vice Principal at Coleg y Cymoedd, John Phelps added “The college is proud to work in partnership with Cardiff Blues and is delighted that one of our learners has signed up for their regional first team squad. As a rugby fan I followed the squad since we formed the academy side at the college and was impressed with the standard of play and the commitment of the young guys.
“Jarrod, along with other first rate college players such as Liam Belcher, Dillon Lewis, Seb Davies, Matthew Marley and Rob Lewis, was always a key player for the college team and shone on the pitch; we wish him well, together with the others who move on from the college team and will certainly follow their careers with interest.”
Richard Hodges, defence coach and WRU performance for the Blues said, “Our coaches kept a close eye on Jarrod during his time at Coleg y Cymoedd and throughout the Blues Academy, and saw the potential in his game. His dedication and commitment is second to none and I’m sure he has an exciting future ahead of him.We are delighted he accepted our invitation to join the Blues”.