Known universally as ‘Merv the Swerve’ Former Wales captain Mervyn Davies has died following a short battle with cancer. He was 65. the Wales and Lions number eight led Wales to the 1976 Five Nations Grand Slam. Merv, was handed the captaincy of Wales in 1975 and went on two victorious British and Irish Lions tours in 1971 to New Zealand and 1974 in South Africa . He would have been a definate shoe-in for Lions captain in 1977. Yet it was never to be.
His rugby career was horribly cut short in 1976. At the still tender age of 29 & with 38 caps for Wales. He suffered a brain haemorrhage playing for Swansea in a Welsh Cup semi-final.
Mervyn Davies 9 December 1946/ 15 March 2012 R.I.P
Ffeirio Says! Mervyn Davies was the David Beckham, of his day. He was instantly recognisable on the pitch with his thick moustache and white headband, A giant of a man standing 6ft 3in Tall. I can still remember vividly the time he had his brain haemorrhage. I was 11 at that time & remember our School assembly & morning prayers rang out for the `Fallen Welsh Hero`.
Merv, sometimes appeared ungainly on the field, but that belied his strength in the maul. He also had an uncanny sense of anticipation, allowing him to get to the breakdown first – and his height made him useful in the line-out. In a poll of Welsh rugby fans in 2002, Davies was voted both greatest Welsh captain and greatest Welsh number eight. He will be truely missed by all. Just wish he could have been here to watch Wales win a third Grand Slam in 8 years. I know he would have enjoyed it…