After two rounds of Celtic Cup action, Dale Stuckey revealed that he has enjoyed making a step-up to play for Cardiff Blues A.
The Pontypridd RFC wing, who returns to Premiership duty this weekend for Friday’s derby clash at the Arms Park, dotted down for his side’s only try of the game during Saturday’s defeat to Ulster A.
Stuckey has felt the benefit of learning from joint head coaches, T Rhys Thomas and Gethin Jenkins, and believes the squad cohesion continues to grow stronger.
“It’s been really good and it’s been a massive step-up in terms of the professionalism of the game,” said the wing.
“Obviously we also have TRT and Melon as coaches, and they’ve really lifted the tempo.
“I’ve really enjoyed it personally. It’s good to have a change and come into an environment like this has been great.
“We’ve come into a mixed environment, the boys have worked hard and overall we went well.
“You have to put your clubs aside for the time being and make sure you gel as a team. You have to do that, otherwise you’ll be walking around in ones-and-twos.”
Stuckey, who had switched to full back during the latter stages of the game in Belfast, linked up well with Wales Sevens’ Dafydd Smith before beating the final defender with a neat grubber kick.
The Ponty star believes the try was a reward for his side’s effort, and he continues to see a growth in the performances.
Stuckey added: “We’re disappointed with the result, but it’s tough to come into an environment with players included from a mix of clubs and only a limited amount of sessions to prepare.
“But there was a massive improvement compared to the performance last week, and the boys really dug in, and the score didn’t reflect the way we played.
“The try was coming for the boys, as we worked our ways to the edges but the final pass or two didn’t go to plan.
“But fair play to Daf on the wing, he caught the ball well and stepped a couple before drawing the wing, and all I had to do was finish it, but it was good to get on the scoresheet.
“Gaz went through and poked a kick behind the defence, and it looked as if it sat up nicely, and I could’ve scored from there, and there were a few times where they ball was passed just behind people in three-on-ones.
“We probably could’ve put a few more points on the board and that would’ve changed the game.”