is that new chap?”
Duw he’s some lad from Cerrig aye, footballer got a red card and
wants to keep fit while he’s banned”
be alright on the wing for the seconds but I don’t think he’ll
was Brian’s introduction to Bala Rugby Club or with hindsight
it was more like Bala Rugby Clubs introduction to “ Yogi”.
Certainly the “footballer” from Cerrig did not take
long to show his skills with the oval ball and his natural talent
to read the game and be “ in the right place at the right
Certainly the “footballer” from Cerrig did not take long to
show his skills with the oval ball and his natural talent to read the
game and be “ in the right place at the right time”. In his
first season 1985 -1986 he received the “Most promising newcomer”
trophy and in the words of the coach Bob Thomas “I think he’s
here to stay”. You hit the nail on the head there Bob!!!!!
During the next very successful few years Bala had two Brian’s playing
at centres, Brian “Yogi” Davies and Brian Lloyd the blacksmith
from Llanfor. By no stretch of the imagination were they the two fastest
things on two legs or even the most athletic to ever wear the number 12
and 13 since William Webb Ellis picked up the ball and ran with it in
1876 but as many an opposing centre noted “ It was like running
into a brick wall”. The comments were quite similar when the two
combined to attack the opposition (this was very much dependant on receiving
the ball from Robin “Penlan” Roberts the Outside Half!!!.
Many a time the mutterings of the opposition were heard to be “brick
shithouses” and “after you”!!!!!
These were the days of the legendary trips “down South” to
play in the Brewers Cup. The trips when” Yogi” was always
in the thick of it either on the field or in the bar. Always one of the
last members of the late night drinking club to retire for the night!!
In fact his Guinness drinking became legendary and although not being
endowed with much musical talent ( Simon Cowell would not be one of his
fans for sure) he was always a proud member of G Rhys Jones’s male
voice choir. This choir entertained with their heart wrenching renditions
of “Myfanwy” and “The Piano man” in rugby clubs
from Raglan to Rhigos and in one nightclub for men who like other men
in Cardiff!!!!!. On the field or in the bar Yogi could only give 100%.
time the club faced a crisis – no loose head prop forwards and as
an example of his loyalty and commitment “ Yogi” volunteered.
Not possessing the physical attributes of a prop forward
s ( Usually they are big fat and static) Yogi was however extremely strong
but more important had “Calon”. The nearest translation of
Calon is “ Heart of a Lion”.
Because of his smaller than usual frame for a prop forward Yogi set about
learning and honing his scrumaging technique so that he could survive
the dark going on of the front row brothership.He insisted on hours and
hours of endless practise on the scrumaging machine pushing Land Rovers
and tractors around the training ground much to his amusement. His commitment
was again 100% come rain or shine sleet or snow he never missed a training
session and set an example for others less committed to follow.
The comments received from other front rows are a testament to the days
when the Bala tight five were a part of North Wales Rugby folklore. Something
Brian is very proud of to this day and brings a smile to his face when
he remembers the battles he’s faced.
The bugger put my face in the mud every time”
he had a nasty pinch on him like a crab”
of his great pleasures was hearing the opposition opting for a lineout
instead of facing a scrum or changing his opposite prop because they couldn’t
cope with the “footballer from Cerrig”. It was a pleasure
to see him grinning like a Cheshire cat when he came up from a scrum.
As the years passed players came and went but although he entered into
married life ( only a police woman could keep tabs on him) and became
father to Ilan and Teleri somehow Yogi managed to find time to give them
and the rugby club 100%.
Over the last few years as the club developed to field teams from under
9 to under 19 Brian again showed total commitment in dedicating himself
to coaching and sharing his experience and vision for the game with these
young people. He was the perfect role model for them and taught them skills
and techniques but more importantly self discipline.
day must have 36 hours in it because not only was he playing, training,
coaching ( rugby and football) and supervising children’s matches
on Sunday he also marked the pitches, cut the fields and hedges was a
husband a father and was in full time employment at Ifor Williams Trailers.
the last few seasons with Bala struggling to find a first team hooker
Brian again stepped forward with the same dedication and energy and made
the no 2 shirt his.
can not really express the contribution of the “footballer from
Cerrig” to the development of Bala Rugby Club or our heartfelt desire
as players and friends to see him back in our midst.
could be that the words of one of Yogis under nines team says it all on
well soon Uncle Yogi – you’re the best coach we’ve ever
had – you’re one of our best mates.
the mouths of babes!!!!!!!!!!!