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Guinness PRO12
Rees confirmed as Cardiff skipper
ESPN Staff
August 22, 2014
Matthew Rees, left, has words with Dwayne Peel during a pre-season friendly last year © Getty Images
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Matthew Rees will captain Cardiff Blues for the new Guinness PRO12 campaign, the region have announced.

New director of rugby Mark Hammett has refused to make radical changes at Cardiff Arms Park since joining the Blues from Super Rugby's Hurricanes, once again tasking Rees with the captaincy as he aims for a smooth transition.

"We are very early days, I've been here for a week, but I'm used to a way of doing things," Hammett said. "I don't plan to come in here and change everything just so I feel comfortable - I will end up with other people feeling uncomfortable. It has to be a slowly, slowly process with going about change.

"There are a few little things I've been working on and part of that is working with the coaches and the structure of the week. Looking at how we become more professional and our fitness levels.

"We've made it clear from the start that this isn't come in and get things sorted straight away. We have a long-term plan and, in terms of getting it running how I feel a professional environment should run, it will take time. But that doesn't mean we don't prepare each week to win rugby.

"The attitude to work within the squad has been great. Knowing the skill sets of the players here, that is still early days. There are some guys who I know are all right and others who have got a bit of work to do.

"I'm still getting used to the squad and the boys within it, I'm still getting to know the place and that is just how it is. It was always going to be like that. I've been here four days, but in terms of learning and understanding what the squad is, where the strengths and weaknesses are, that is starting to happen."

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