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Wednesday, 15 August, 2001, 14:05 GMT 15:05 UK
Caerphilly's backs to the wall
Emori Katalau
Fijian Emori Katalau adds valuable experience
Caerphilly avoided relegation from the Welsh-Scottish League comfortably last season in 10th place, as Cross Keys plummeted back to Division One.

But with no club being promoted to the top flight to replace Keys, Caerphilly are right back in the firing line as whipping-boys elect.

However, while there have been no big-name arrivals at Virginia Park over the summer, coach Gareth Nicholas has largely managed to keep his squad together, although No 8 Alfie Mocelutu has joined Neath.

Caerphilly proved themselves to be at least competitive last season and the addition of two Fijians should help them remain that way.

  Season tips:
Celtic League prediction: Pool stage
Welsh-Scottish League prediction: 11th
Star player: Seremaia Bai

Well-traveled lock/backrow Emori Katalau, recruited from Llanelli after a previous spell with Dunvant, will add experience and power to the Caerphilly scrum.

But it is the other recruit, Seremaia Bai, who could prove to be a game-breaker. Bai joined Cross Keys towards the end of last season and made an immediate impact at both fly-half and centre.

The 22-year-old shows a good tactical awareness with his kicking for a young player and could provide the extra spark Caerphilly require to break well-organised defences.

Caerphilly should enjoy themselves in the European Shield, with Italians Overmach-Parma and French side Stade Rochelais beatable, while Gloucester will provide two welcome cross-border 'derbies'.

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