Scarlets will bounce back with home grown talent

Guinness PRO12 Editor

11 Aug 2010


Scarlets new chief executive Mark Davies is confident the Welsh region will bounce back from the disappointments of last season.

The Scarlets finished ninth in the Magners League last time out and were left to rely on the Amlin Challenge Cup success of Cardiff Blues to secure a place in the Heineken Cup.

But while the 2009/10 campaign wasn’t a successful one for the former Celtic League champions and three-times European semi-finalists, Davies believes the region’s development programme means the future will be a bright one at Parc-y-Scarlets.

Motorcycling guru Davies, who has 20 years experience with Honda, revealed he intends to continue developing that home-grown talent rather than make high-profile signings in his quest to bring back the region’s glory days.

"I wouldn't just go out and buy a Valentino Rossi. I prefer to work and develop youngsters like Jonathan Rea and Eugene Laverty. I get more reward from developing within,” said the 48-year-old.

"The Scarlets are a lot more than just a rugby business and that was a big attraction to me.

"The hard work and commitment here represents the spirit of a nation.

"I have no intention of being a failure and the future is encouraging. Why can't we dream about winning the Heineken Cup?

"It's no atomic science. This region's rugby development ethos is working and producing results for the Scarlets and Welsh rugby."

Davies is the third chief executive following Stuart Gallacher and Paul Sergeant in just over a year at Parc y Scarlets but has pledged his future to the region for the next three years.

And despite winning just five Magners League games last season, the Scarlets have announced a 33 per cent increase on season tickets, a month before their first home game against Connacht.

"People in tough economic times are voting with their wallets and that's significant," added Davies.


O’Connor looking for European response from Ulster

Alan O’Connor is hoping he and his Ulster team-mates can give a better account of themselves on the European stage when Exeter Chiefs come to town on Saturday. Ulster’s European adventure this season got off to a disappointing start as the Guinness PRO12 leaders were downed 28-13 by Bordeaux Bègles on Sunday. But the Ulstermen […]