PONTYPOOL, South Wales, 16th June 2019 - Pontypool RFC is pleased to announce the signing of Rhys Clarke from Ebbw Vale RFC as the club go in search of its fourth consecutive WRU National Championship title.
The 28-year-old lock joins Pooler after spending the last eight seasons with the Eugene Cross Park club. Clarke began his career with Penallta RFC, but rose to prominence at Ebbw Vale, making over 150 appearances for the Principality Premiership side. The highlight of Clarke's stay at the club came in 2016, when he played a key role in the club's league title triumph.
On joining Pooler, he said: "After eight years with Ebbw Vale, I felt I had given everything I could to the club and I am excited to be embarking on a new challenge with Pontypool. When speaking to Leighton, it became evident what a great ethos and set of values exist at the club.
"I started my career with Penallta alongside Scott Matthews and it will be great to play in the same team as him again," said Clarke. "Although there may be a few more grey hairs knocking about this time!
"I would like to think I bring a big work rate to my rugby. So whether that be during games or at training, I like to think I always give my all and I cannot wait to get started for preseason training next month."
Clarke will add a huge amount of experience and nous to an already battle-hardened pack. The second-row featured for the Dragons Premiership Select side during the 2016-2017 season and Pooler head coach, Leighton Jones, is looking forward to welcoming Clarke to the club.
"Rhys is a proven performer and has a track record of delivering Premiership standard performances on a regular basis,” said Jones. “He can cover the second-row, the number six shirt and will be a valuable member of the squad next season.
“Rhys is a skilful player. He has good hands, is strong in the air and will fit in well with the lads currently fighting for those positions.
"We have always wanted to create an environment where competition for places remains strong at all times. The signings we have made so far this summer - Rhys included - ensures that this will continue as we head into another important campaign.”
Have you purchased your Pontypool RFC season ticket yet? If not, you still have time! Please click here for more information on how to join the #PoolerArmy for the 2019-2020 WRU National Championship season!