The Captain for tonight's derby game discusses Ospreys life
Ospreys regular Jonathan Spratt will once again captain the team as they take on Cardiff tonight at the Liberty Stadium. The centre joined the Ospreys from Neath in 2006 and is proud to play for his region:
"I love playing for the Ospreys and running out in front of a home crowd, there's nothing like playing for the team you supported growing up, first of all with Neath and now for the Ospreys".
As well as playing for the Ospreys Jonathan also spent time playing for Taranaki in New Zealand and had a season with London Irish before returning to his home side in 2012. Asked if the experience of playing in other countries had helped him he commented:
"It's the same as anything when you go away from a great environment like the Ospreys, but I was lucky to experience two other good teams both in New Zealand and London so it has helped me progress as a rugby player and both on and off the pitch as a person as well. It was great to then be able to come back and put that for good use for the Ospreys. I always wanted to come back to the Ospreys, when you go away from your home club it's nice to be able to return and be welcomed back so it was great to find my way back home."
In his sixth season with the Ospreys and at age 27 Jonathan is one of the senior squad members, he remarked on this, and the new players coming into the side:
" I wouldn't say I'm one of the senior players at my age but it's good being one of the longer serving team members. We have so many experienced players here with the amount of Welsh players and the British and Irish Lions contingent that we have in the team. We're so lucky to have a great mix of them and the youth coming through with the younger boys. We're producing some really great quality youngsters which is brilliant to see.
The young players have taken to it like ducks to water over the last fortnight of training. We've lost a large quantity of players to International duty for the Autumn Tests but they have brought in loads of energy. It's great for these boys to experience playing at a higher level than what they play at already and are used to. I think a lot of them have found the experience invaluable.
There's a good crop of budding youngsters coming through. We've seen the wingers like Aisea playing really well and Matthew Morgan at 10. Some of the boys in the pack like Lloyd Peers and Marc Thomas are really putting their hands up and fighting for their position which is great to see".
Looking forward to this evening's game against Cardiff, tonight's Captain added:
"Hopefully we can build on what we did against Leicester last week. We've had things to work on but hopefully we can get a good result. It's great that it's a home game as I love playing at the Liberty Stadium, it's a fabulous playing surface and we're blessed to have really great support down there and hopefully we will have a big turnout".
Be a part of the great support that Jonathan and his team want by coming down to the Liberty Stadium tonight, kick off 7.30pm. Tickets are just £15 for adults and £5 for students, OAPs and children.