Kirby Myhill was “honoured” to captain Cardiff Blues as he made his return from injury in Friday’s friendly victory over Ospreys.
The hooker has been on the sidelines since suffering a hamstring injury in October’s Guinness PRO14 clash against Connacht.
The former Wales under-20 international featured in a pack containing youngsters such as Theo Bevacqua, Gwilym Bradley and Ioan Rhys Davies, who are all in early stages of their senior careers.
Myhill was relieved to be back in action after his absence and is driven by the competition for the number two jersey at the Arms Park.
“It’s been a while for me, around four or five months having been injured, so it was nice to get back out on the pitch and get a trot,” said the 29 year old, who is in his fifth season at the capital.
“It’s a fresh start now, with Dai coming in but there will always be competition which makes all of us hookers better.
“There’s a good group of us and whoever plays has to keep the jersey, and whoever is not playing has to fight to get into that spot.
“Cardiff Blues is a big club and it was an honour to captain the team and lead the boys out there.
“It’s my first opportunity at that and it was good. I enjoyed it.
“I was there in the shoes of these youngsters once upon a time so it’s nice if I’m able to pass anything on to the youngsters.
“That’s one of my roles as captain and I thoroughly enjoyed it.”
The hosts ran in six tries to secure a comfortable victory over their Welsh rivals, as they made their long-awaited return to the Arms Park.
Myhill was encouraged by the “fantastic” youngsters who featured but recognises it will be a completely different challenge against Connacht at Galway next week.
The hooker added: “It was a good performance, to be fair. Obviously we’ve only had this week together as a group and we showed good, attacking rugby.
“We said before the game that we wanted to throw the ball around and luckily enough the weather was good.
“So we managed to do that and it was a good performance from the backs.
“The season is a squad effort at the end of the day, and a few boys played today who haven’t played in a couple of months and a lot of younger boys came in.
“I thought they were fantastic, to be fair to them.
“Like I said, it’s a squad effort and we need everyone to be fit and firing.
“Game like these really benefit the squad and puts everyone up to scratch, and if you’re called upon then you can step in and play.
“We were at the Arms Park full time last year and boys used to like going into town for a coffee, but obviously we can’t do that anymore.
“But it’s nice to be back at the Arms Park and playing on the new pitch and the boys enjoyed it.
“Next week it’s Connacht and the weather is always the big thing out there, so it will be a very different type of fight.
“Conditions will play a big part in Galway so we’ll look ahead to that and we’ve got a big couple of weeks ahead of us.”