Interview l As the Blue and Blacks prepare for their Investec Champions Cup match against Toulouse on Saturday, Club Captain Josh Turnbull sees himself as having a different role within the team this year.
Cardiff have been giving more opportunities to young players throughout the campaign and have seen them thrive with the added responsibility and experience.
Now Turnbull believes it is his, along with other senior players’ responsibility to support and help their progress.
“If you look at the player profile and the squad the coaches have been putting out, other than I think a couple of weeks ago, the average age was 23 or under,” said Turnbull.
“Me and Rey bring the age profile up a little bit, but Jockey has been clear that he wants to give young boys opportunities because they're the future of the club.
“Come next season, he needs those players to have had as much experience as they possibly can and then the likes of myself and Ellis have got to chip in really and help develop those youngsters for the long term."
Cardiff play four tough fixtures in the group stages of the competition, with two trips to France to play Toulouse and Racing 92, while they welcome Bath Rugby and Harlequins to the Arms Park.
Although expectations in Europe may be lower than previous years, Turnbull wants the side to show plenty of fight and play an exciting and enterprising style of rugby as the young players continue to develop.
“From an outside perspective, there's probably not going to be much expectation on any of the regions to do well in the European competitions. That's something we spoke about at the end of last season as well, but there's an in-house expectation to turn up and deliver our game.
“We fight for everything and we make sure we enjoy what we do and I think from the start of the season, we've done that.
“Some of the results haven't gone our way, but we've been in every game and we've come away with losing bonus points and we've been within a score.
“I think we've played well to the point where we've entertained the fans, they've liked what they've seen, and they've come back for more. That's all that we can keep doing and in the meantime, those players will continue to grow whilst they're doing that as well."