The No 9 talks pranks, dogs and unwise purchases

Downtime with… Scarlets and Wales scrum-half Gareth Davies

Any practical jokes you can tell us?

Rob Evans was going on a date in the summer, had his shorts laid out ready, and I cut a hole in the gooch area. He went off and only realised there was a hole as he arrived for the date, so he had to tell her. She laughed it off – and, for the record, he did have pants on.

What’s the funniest thing you’ve seen or heard on the pitch?

Lou Reed making cow noises during a scrum. Rhodri Jones, the Ospreys prop, was playing for us (Scarlets) at the time and his nickname is ‘Cow’. Lou was pushing behind him and mooing.

If you could have one superpower, what would it be?

Teleporting. I’d want to go to Barbados.

Do you have any phobias?

Quite a few. Heights is my worst one.

So you wouldn’t appear on I’m A Celebrity…?

I’d be nowhere near that. Snakes are probably my second worst, so I’d stay away from that.

Who are the jokers in the squad? 

In the Wales squad, Callum Sheedy is full of confidence and likes to think he’s a bit of a joker. He’s only been here a few weeks but he’s settled in pretty well and is a bit of a character.

With the Scarlets, I’ve got to give James ‘Cubby’ Davies a mention. Him and Rob Evans try to be the jokers.

Do you have any superstitions?

I get asked that question a lot but I don’t have any.

What about nicknames?

Sheepdog. It’s my Call of Duty handle.

What has been your most embarrassing moment?

When I was younger and playing for Llanelli RFC, I once had to run off the pitch to go to the toilet in the middle of a game. Nigel Owens was reffing so I told him and he said to me “Off you go” in Welsh.

I was 18 at the time and luckily there weren’t that many people in the crowd watching and the game wasn’t on TV.

Who’d you like to be stuck in a lift with?

Ricky Gervais, in character as David Brent. I’m a big fan of The Office.

The silliest thing you’ve ever bought?

A Segboard (hoverboard). I bought one for me and one for my sister – and they were a couple of hundred quid each. I don’t think my sister used her one and I hardly used mine.

It was probably about ten years ago and I was living at home, but outside my mum and dad’s it’s not a smooth surface, there are stones, so it was impossible to use them outside the house.

Who would be your three dream dinner party guests?

The UFC fighter Conor McGregor – he’s a good entertainer. Stormzy. And Dan Bilzerian. He used to be an American actor but is now a professional poker player and social media influencer. He’s a multimillionaire and has got houses all over the world.

If your house was on fire, what would you save (people and pets are safe)?

My PS4 monitor.

What would you like to achieve outside of rugby?

To have a healthy family and lots of dogs. My girlfriend has a chihuahua, Winnie, and I have a bulldog, Pete.

You live together – do the dogs get on?

They do, in a weird way. They have a strange relationship – they love each other but argue quite a bit. The little one gets jealous if Pete sits on my lap.

What’s the best piece of advice you have ever received?

Probably what my father told me when I was younger – the more you put in, the more you get out.

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Cheese and onion crisps. Walkers.

How’d you like to be remembered?

As someone who gave their all. And scored unbelievable tries!

This article originally appeared in the January 2021 edition of Rugby World magazine.

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