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Rhys Williams' Cardiff Life column

1st June 2016

Finally, time to take a long, deep breath...  

The season has come to an end and what a way to celebrate a positive and much-improved campaign than at our fantastic End of Season Awards evening.
We kicked-off the evening with a drinks reception in the Grand Hall of the National Museum of Wales, Cardiff, enabling all the players and their partners to mingle in the salubrious surroundings.
I have to say how well they all scrubbed up following a long and hard season and with that in mind the players didn’t look too bad either!
We moved through the Lost Treasures exhibition and into the Reardon Smith Lecture Theatre for the awards ceremony and what a perfect city centre location for Wales’ Capital Region.
Jack Baldus a session/cocktail pianist entertained our guests on the ivory and the evening was of course hosted by Cardiff’s own Gethin Jones, who did a great job.
It is the one night of the year where our corporate sponsors and partners really have the chance to get to know the players and management and the family culture at Cardiff Blues.
That was the predominant theme of our chairman, Peter Thomas’ opening speech.
He spoke passionately about the ‘Blues family’ and that is something, which is epitomised by the way Cardiff Blues, rugby, the city and wider community have got behind and supported Owen Williams.
The highlight of the evening was undoubtedly the Cardiff Blues edition of ‘Mean Tweets’.
For anyone who isn’t aware of this it is essentially a segment on the Jimmy Kimmel show where celebrities read mean tweets that have been sent about them.
If it is good enough for President Obama it is good enough for us and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house. Credit to the players, our CEO Richard Holland and Peter Thomas for being such good sports. You really had to be there!
The after party was at Tiger Tiger and it was a great chance for everyone at Cardiff Blues, our partners and sponsors to let down their hair in a superb Parisian-esque themed night.
Drinks flowed and our corporate partners led the charge into the early hours of the morning.
Alas I’m now swapping my dicky bow and dinner jacket for lycra as I morph into a ‘MAMIL’ (Middle-Aged-Man In Lycra) and train for the #StayStrongForOws bike ride from BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park to Amsterdam.
For those of you that don’t know, Owen was a Wales international who suffered a serious spinal injury representing Cardiff Blues in a World Club Series 10s tournament in Singapore almost two years ago.
We have stood by Owen as he adjusts to his life-changing injuries and this latest ride will raise much-needed funds and awareness for the cause.
We will cycle more than 500km over four days for what is a fantastic cause and I’m sure any saddle sores,  cuts and grazes will be worthwhile in the end.
Any support to our just giving page would be greatly appreciated and for now, Caerphilly Mountain here I come.

You can read Rhys Williams' column in Cardiff Life at the beginning of each month.