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Smith ready to put injury set-back behind him ahead of return to action

First Team News | 3rd September 2021

Garyn Smith is ready to put his injury set-back behind him as he makes his return in the pre-season opener against Harlequins on Saturday.

The homegrown centre has been sidelined since New Year’s Day with a knee ligament injury, but partners Max Llewellyn in midfield at Twickenham Stoop, making his first appearance in nine months.

Having achieved his 100th appearance during the 2020/21 campaign, the former Wales under 20 international is determined to pick up where he left off and make his mark as he looks to earn a starting spot in a competitive centre division at Cardiff Arms Park.

“This was the first time I’ve had a major operation to come back from so for me it’s about coming back and putting performances together,” explained Smith.

“I want to get back into the team and play each week and get back into a role like last season where I had a good run of games.

“The injury came at a bad point for me so now I want to get back to the point I left off.

“To be fair, Ben [Thomas] took his opportunities and it was great to see him going up with Wales.

“We’ve got some quality players in midfield now and some real strength in depth in that area.

“You look at Willis, who has also been up with Wales, and Rey who has been outstanding every year he’s been here, putting in performances every week.

“You’ve also got Max stepping up and had some good performances towards the end of last season as well.

“There’s big competition there, but that only drives us to push on and play in that jersey every week.”

With only three weeks remaining until the start of the United Rugby Championship campaign, Smith insists the Blue and Blacks are ready to take to the field following an intense pre-season block.

The centre added: “The boys are confident, training has been sharp and intense, and for a lot of the boys it’s been a long build-up.

“With the number of weeks we’ve been back in and the intensity of training, the boys are just looking forward to getting to the weekend and hopefully getting a win to start us off for the season.

“The big focus for us has been on trying to get our processes and everything we can control in the attack to be running smoothly.

“We want to back up our performances each week and start winning more games by putting in good performances week-in, week-out.”