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Cardiff Blues Ultimate XV | Number Eight

Blues News | 8th April 2020


Yesterday Martyn Williams claimed his place in the Cardiff Blues Ultimate XV, receiving 53 per cent of the vote, now we turn attention to Number Eight.

 

Robin Copeland (2012-2014 | 53 appearances | 8 tries | 1 caps for Ireland)

Robin Copeland made the switch to Cardiff Blues from Championship side Rotherham Titans in 2012. He made instant at the Arms Park, and was able to play either in the second row or back row. The highlight of his time at the Welsh capital came during the stunning Heineken Cup victory over a star-studded Toulon, where he was named man of the match, and would win Player of the Season later that year. Copeland would join Munster in 2014 and make his debut for Ireland.

 

Andy Powell (2005-2010 | 63 appearances | 5 tries | 23 caps for Wales)

Andy Powell’s form at Cardiff Blues earned him a first Test cap for Wales in 2008 and a year later he would be part of the British and Irish Lions squad for the tour to South Africa. A larger than life character, Powell was part of a competitive back row at the Arms Park but arguably enjoyed the finest form of his career at the Welsh capital.

 

Xavier Rush (2005-2012 | 153 appearances | 22 tries | 8 caps for New Zealand)

Xavier Rush arrived at the Arms Park as an All Black, but made a huge impact both on and off the field during his seven year stay at Cardiff Blues. A bulldozing ball carrier, Rush’s leadership would see him appointed captain and he cemented his status as a Cardiff Blues legend. He was voted the fans’ Player of the Season in his debut campaign and would go on to make 153 appearances for the region.

 

Nick Williams (2016-present | 77 appearances | 13 tries)

Nick Williams has had major impact both on and off the field at Cardiff Blues since joining from Ulster in 2016. The number eight had established himself as one of the PRO14’s leading number eights during his time in Belfast, thanks to his explosive ball carrying ability. Williams form remained impressive at the Welsh capital and was named 2017/18 Player of the Season with a deadly combination of his attacking and defensive attributes.

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