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Historic club Swansea RFC facing a date with destiny

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: April 23, 2014

Scott Gibbs, Whites v Padora, November 1999,

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ST HELEN'S has witnessed countless big games down the years but Saturday's local derby against Neath is set to be one of the most nerve-jangling in history.

The Whites simply must beat their close rivals — and hope Aberavon slip up away to Carmarthen Quins — to avoid being relegated from the top flight of Welsh rugby for the first time in their long and illustrious history.

The glory days of beating the likes of the touring Australians and All Blacks have been overshadowed by an alarming fall from grace since the advent of regional rugby 10 years ago with Swansea currently propping up the table of the semi-professional Principality Premiership.

Lifelong Whites supporter, Rob O'Shea, who will be at the game on Saturday with his family, said: "It's a must win game on Saturday with a bonus point.

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"As far as I'm concerned, a team like Swansea, which has beaten all the major touring teams, should never be in a position where they are in danger of dropping out of the Welsh premier division.

"It is one of the most important games in the club's 140 plus year history."

His son, Conor O'Shea, who is aged 12, said: "I have been supporting the Whites since I was four and I would be very disappointed if we went down.

''The whole family are Whites mad." Kieran O'Shea, aged 10, added: "I will feel really sad if they go down – but I will still love them."

Swansea's last minute shoot-out has been made possible thanks to an amazing turn around in form that has seen them record two victories in the last two games to give them a fighting chance of avoiding the drop.

Wales and Whites legend Richard Moriarty has called for supporters to get behind the team.

He said: "The club is desperately asking for the supporters to get behind the team. It's obviously quite nerve-wracking but I am confident that the boys can do it."

Kick off at St Helen's is at 2.30pm on Saturday.

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  • LordHafod  |  April 23 2014, 11:45PM

    Sad reflection on the professional era. How many players, have taken massive amounts of money out of the game, especially abroad at the expense of local rugby. The great local clubs will cease to exist soon and this will affect the national team. All for progress, but the model is broken. Great memories of the Whites, no loyalty to Ospreys, too commercial and mercenary.

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  • neathguard  |  April 23 2014, 12:06PM

    The bottom clubs of the Premier are all clubs with a famous history, Newport ,Cardiff, Bridgend, Aberavon, , Neath and Swansea.. Next Saturday is a shoot out for survival, and whether it be Aberavon or Swansea. How times change. Great derbies between Neath and Aberavon and Swansea., now appear to be a thing of the last. Is it any coincidence that the bottom clubs are feeders for the Ospreys,

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