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BYU Rugby Scrumhalf Shaun Davies: Interview of the Week

BYU Rugby ForeverContributor ISeptember 7, 2009

If you had to choose just one player from the BYU Rugby team that best displayed the skills and dynamics necessary to meet all facets of the game of rugby, the clear choice would be BYU Rugby Scrumhalf Shaun Davies. While his height might cause the unknowing observer to question, anyone who has witnessed him play for even a few minutes knows of his amazing elusiveness and physicality on the field. (Photos by Paul Meyers)

BYU Rugby Scrumhalf Shaun Davies eludes SDSU defenders in the 2009 Big Four semifinals
At the position of scrumhalf, Shaun's obvious talent and high level of execution not only rendered him an individual threat but also set him apart as a dependable leader. Throughout the season, it was a common occurrence to witness Shaun score more than one individual try as well as set up numerous others. His aptitude and decisiveness at such a critical position enabled the BYU Rugby team to play at a faster pace than ever before.

With great pleasure, the BYU Rugby Forever "Interview of the Week" series continues with the most recognizable player on the field today, the face of the BYU Rugby team, All-American Scrumhalf Shaun Davies.

BYU Rugby Scrumhalf Shaun Davies: 2009 Title Match MVP
BYU Rugby Forever:
What influenced you to come to BYU all the way from home in South Africa? Has it been a tough transition to adapt to the LDS/BYU culture?

Shaun Davies:
Well, BYU is a really good school, and the rugby team speaks for itself; so that is the main reason, but I always just wanted to study away from home...just never knew it would be this far. It was never tough to adapt to the culture because all the guys on the team were so helpful to Dylan and me.

BYU Rugby Forever:
In the 2009 National Title match against Cal Berkeley, you notched a penalty kick with less than 5 minutes left in the game to give BYU the win by 3 points and to be subsequently named the match MVP. What does this moment and achievement mean to you? to your family?

Shaun Davies:
I was extremely honored to have received the award. To be honest though, I think there were a bunch of guys who could have got the award before me; I guess I was just lucky to have got the kick over.

My parents think that I am the next Daniel Carter or something now. I better not let them down.

BYU Rugby Forever:
Earlier this summer, you were injured while playing for the RegionalAll-Star team, the Pacific Coast Grizzlies, which injury prevented youfrom playing with the All-Americans. What was injured and how? What's the status of your recovery and ability to play next season?

Shaun Davies:
I tore the MCL and PCL; the MCL was torn completely though. It was just unlucky how it happened. I was running the ball back and thought I got round the first wave of defenders, but then some guy hit me from the side and there went my knee.

I am meant to be back and playing full contact by mid September, but I think I will just take it easy. I don’t see the point of coming back and then just hurting it again.

BYU Rugby Forever:
What were some of the most intense moments you experienced this past season?

Shaun Davies:
There are so many intense moments from this last season. It varies from Coach Smyth nearly killing me in a half time talk against Dartmouth to playing Berkley in the final.

One of my favorite moments would have to be against [Arkansas State]. I remember after the try we scored, Kyle Sumsion went crazy (most intense moment), and I just burst out laughing at him. And looking back at that now, I still laugh even though that was for me the toughest game of the season.

BYU Rugby Forever:
What are your goals for yourself and for the team during the rest of your BYU Rugby career? If possible, would you pursue the opportunity to play rugby on a higher level?

Shaun Davies:
For the BYU rugby team, we have now set the benchmark of a perfect season, and we know what it I would love to have three more of those, and I am willing to do whatever it takes.

It’s funny you ask that, because yesterday I was watching the Berkley game but concentrating on myself...and it made me realize that if I do want to play at a higher level, there is still a lot I have to improve. To answer your question, I want to go as far in rugby as I can go.

BYU Rugby Forever:
To all the BYU Rugby faithful around the world, do you have any particular message or thoughts you would share?

Shaun Davies:
Thank you all so much for the support. You don’t realize how much it helps and how much we enjoy it. I hope that we can make you guys just as happy this season as we did last.

BYU Rugby Forever:
Thanks, Shaun. Hope you heal up well in time for another great season! Congrats on the MVP and national honors!

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