FIVE RGC women representatives have been named in the 44-player Welsh squad for an unprecedented autumn series at Cardiff Arms Park.

Squad mainstay Jess Kavanagh-Williams enjoyed under fine Regional Championship campaign and promises to play a significant role within the set-up, with Bethan Davies, Brea Leung, Gwenllian Prys and Lisa Neumann also rewarded for their exceptional recent form with selections.

Head coach Rowland Phillips's team meet South Africa, Hong Kong and Canada on consecutive weekends in November, and selection for the international side has been based on regional participation for the first time ever in the women’s game.

Phillips, said: "The regional programme has been very successful with regards to improving standards in the women's game, and it's delivered what we hoped it would.

"It's enabled us to discover new players and it's highlighted our strength in depth.

"We've got a limited amount of time together in camp before we face South Africa. We know the Springboks have really pushed on their rugby programme, and they'll be a big and physical challenge to kick-start our autumn series.

"We're familiar with Hong Kong after the World Cup last year. Even though we won with a bonus point in Dublin, we'll admit we got our nose bloodied in that match. They play a quick game because they've got a lot of speed and agility in their side, so that encounter might warrant a different selection approach to the others."

“With Canada being fourth in the world, that's a great way for us to finish off our autumn series. How we perform in that match will give us clarity on how we move forward."

The news comes as another massive boost to the women’s game throughout the North Wales region, which has gone from strength-to-strength thanks to a series of initiatives run by the Gogs to promote participation at youth level.