Scarlet Fever 72 founder Greg Caine offers opinion on proposed Ospreys-Scarlets merger

by Jordan A Jones

LEADER of Scarlet Fever 72 newspage Greg Caine has said he will remain to support the Scarlets, despite the prospect of a merger with main rivals Ospreys.

It has been proposed that the Scarlets will merge with their West Walian rivals Ospreys at the start of next season in a radical shake-up which will change the landscape of Welsh rugby.

A decision is to be made this evening at The Professional Rugby board meeting, which will thrash out what the merger will mean for the future of Welsh rugby.

WalesOnline reports that the two regions have agreed to merge together, with the finer details expected to come out in the upcoming weeks.

Pembrokeshire based Greg has supported the Scarlets since their inception in 2003, having beaten the Blues at Stradey Park in his first game.

Even the Scarlets’ move from Stradey Park to Parc y Scarlets was one that some fans were unhappy about, according to Greg.

“It was a shame to move away from Stradey and that was difficult to take in terms of identity, as Stradey had seen so many famous occasions, but now Parc y Scarlets feels like home.

“It took us 10 years to get to that point though, which gives you a kind of time span for how long these things take.”

The West Wales region have four games left in the regular season but will have their season extended in the playoffs.

Despite some posts on social media, suggesting a boycott of Judgement Day, Greg will continue to support the region, until plans are finalised.

“It hasn’t hampered my support for the rest of the season. We are still the Scarlets for the time being and the team needs the supporters to push them on.

“We need to finish high enough to qualify for the Champions Cup next season and to get into the Pro14 playoffs which will only strengthen our bargaining position when it comes to defending our standalone status.

“I wouldn’t boycott watching them over this.”

It is likely to affect for the 2019/2020 season, which is around the same time as this year’s World Cup in Japan. It is believed that this will pave the way for a North Wales region.

The news is at a time where the Welsh national team are preparing for their trip to Murrayfield, in their penultimate Six Nations fixture as they chase a Grand Slam.

The national team has an influx of Ospreys and Scarlets players. Scarlets have 12 players involved whilst Ospreys have seven, that includes captain Alun Wyn-Jones.

After a heroic victory over the old enemy England, Alun Wyn-Jones commented on Project Reset, which is being overseen by the Welsh Rugby Union: “Off-field, rugby in Wales isn’t the prettiest.”

Alun Wyn-Jones’ contract expires at the end of the Rugby World Cup and could potentially see his club career finish outside of Wales.