Quins' stalwart Lenny picks a great 'Select XV'

Lenny ScourfieldWhen we asked Lenny Scourfield to choose a ‘Select XV’ out of all the players he had come across in a long and distinguished career with Pembroke Dock Harlequins he agreed, but already felt it was going to be highly challenging because of all the fantastic players he had encountered from Aberystwyth to Whitland, from Cardigan to Tenby.
“I knew it was going to be tough but it was even harder than I thought because once I settled down with paper and pen to hand I could literally have picked enough opponents to fill four teams, not just the very best players but those I also respected for being one-club men, something I always felt was important.
In fact, I was always a Quins’ man and the only other team I was delighted to play for on a regular basis was the Pembroke County RFC side I was honoured to represent!

‘Bows’ was a hard blighter behind strong running three-quarters
Geraint BowenMy choice at full back would have to be Geraint Bowen (Narberth) because he was a match-inner in attack and as strong a No 15 in defence as I’ve come across, especially under the high ball. He had a kick like a mule and even when you managed to knock him back he quickly rebounded – and it was great that he received his Welsh cap!
Others I considered were Dai John (Haverfordwest) and Gavin Scotcher (Tenby), two very different but excellent No 15s.
On the right wing I would choose Steve Hartland (Various clubs) for his strength and power, but also because he was a very deceptive runner and useful with telling little kicks. He seemed to pop up from nowhere so was hard to mark – and all in all he was a pain in the bum as an opponent!
My No 12 would be Dai Hughes (Whitland); a hard, no-nonsense centre who would tackle all day and help keep moves going with his support play. He was also a character because one day I was setting up a ruck and he slid in to block the ball. I was expecting to feel his knees in my back but instead he leaned over and kissed me on the cheek. Over a pint afterwards he laughingly told me that he knew that would wind me up more than a bump – and he was blinking right!
Colin PhillipsHis centre partner would be Lee Jones (Neyland), who we only came up against for a short time before he moved on to Pontypool. I played alongside him in the county side when he was a youngster and we could already see that he oozed class.
To complete my three-quarter line I would have Colin Phillips (Cardigan and Narberth). We came across Colin when he was with The Cardis and again he had something about him. He was very fast and elusive and seemed to get involved in places you wouldn’t expect as he scored a lot of tries. I mean it as a compliment when I say he was ‘a niggly little tow rag’!
Other three-quarters who came close were wingers Kaye Phillips (Aberystwyth), Andrew Morgan (Haverfordwest) and Gerwyn Richard (Cardigan), plus centres Martin ‘Ted Tamilia (Neyland) and Chrissie ‘Blue’ Evans (Tenby).
Match-winning half backs, both with a touch of class, but no softies either!
Ben ChildsAt outside half I would have to pick Ben Childs, who could change a game in seconds with his eye for the smallest gap to exploit. He was a very good place kicker and also great out of his hand, was never afraid of physical contact and as good a tactician as I came across. We knew he was good but it was only whilst playing with him in the county team a few times that I realised just how good he really was!
Other 10s I admired were Robert ‘Dobbie’ Jones (Cardigan), Rodney Cadogan (Pembroke) and Billy Martin (Haverfordwest)
I go all the way to Aberystwyth for my scrum half and that’s Huw Rees-Evans, who we hated playing against because he was so strong for a little feller and was very elusive. We used to plan to stop his breaks but he did so when he was very close to the scrum and often scored close-range tries against us before we could grab him. He was also highly combative for a small bloke!
Three other combative, but very influential No 9s were Martin Walsh (St Davids), Eric Phillips (Cardigan) and Mathew Williams (Neyland).
Powerhouses in the front row
In the front row I would be looking for players who did their job well in the set-pieces as my starting point and Colin Morshead (Whitland) did just that but he had a terrific work rate in broken play and could also tackle non-stop in defence. Added to that he was a top man on and off the pitch.
Evan DaviesThere have been plenty of good hookers about but I finally went for Evan Davies (Fishguard) because he not only guaranteed good possession from scrums but he used to play like an extra back-rower around the pitch. He also had the ability to wind up a couple of our boys in the front row!
Some of the others amongst the many I considered for the No 2 jersey were Derek Burton (Cardigan) and Johnnie Griffiths (Haverfordwest).
To complete my front row I would pick Mark Truslove (Cardigan), who was as strong a prop as I have ever seen. But he wasn’t only a good scrummager but a real ball-winner in mauls with his ability to rip the ball clear of opponents. No matter how hard we tried to halt him in any way we could, he kept coming back at us and it often took two tacklers to slow him down.
I’ve chosen four other props in Richard ‘Bomber’ Morris (Pembroke), Jack Dudley (St Davids), Brian ‘Ginger’ Davies (Haverfordwest) and Willie Miles (Fishguard), all big characters as well as being good forwards!
Different ways of playing – but a good second-row pairing
Everyone thinks Dai Bennett (St Davids) was a gentleman of rugby and he was – off the field. But he knew his stuff on it because he was not only a giant in the linesout (he would make any hooker throwing in look good) but he wasn’t averse to slowing down possession with his ability to block our possession whenever he could. I enjoyed playing alongside him for the county and I liked the fact that although he could have found a place in any team in the county he stayed with The Saints!
To partner him I would go for Lyn Davies (Whitland), a second row who I had my fair share of battles with and who never took a backward step. He was hard and uncompromising and was always trying to play mind games – but he had just the sort of ‘dog’ attitude that suited the Whitland pack of that time. He would be just the sort of player I would include.
I’ve also chosen four hard men in Matthew Edwards (Pembroke), Denzil ‘Tarw’ Davies (Haverfordwest), Andrew Rose (Tenby) and Peter ‘Shavers’ Evans (Cardigan).
Power, pace and high skill levels in the back row
Richard Jelley (Pembroke) always seemed to play really well when we came across him in our local derbies and was so quick to the break down. It was frustrating the way he seemed to block possession and get away with it. But he was a great club men and the biggest compliment I can pay him is to say I wish he had come down the hill to play for us!
We used to call the Aberystwyth pack the ‘Jelly Boys’ because we seemed able to wobble them about – but Mark Keyworth was a different kettle of fish. He had played flanker for England in his younger days and you could still see why. He was an out and out ball-winner and commanded respect on the pitch as he helped toughen up those playing alongside him. Aber were very lucky to have his services for so long!
I found it hard not to include Keith Fleming (Haverfordwest), Adrian Varney (Cardigan) and Randal Evans (Haverfordwest) – but Mr Carne wouldn’t allow me to have two back rows!
My No 8 would be Mike Evans (Tenby) who reminded me so much of our own Paul Rogers. He was big, strong and aggressive – and never short of confidence either. He excelled in getting into opponents faces and winding them up but he was so much more than that because he was a thinking No 8 who could read the patterns of play as well as most.
I’ll finish with a few more No 8s in Simon Edwards (Pembroke), Richard ‘Stag’ Jones (Narberth) and Ian ‘Gwangie’ Thomas (Llangwm.
It’s been a pleasure to pick my ‘Select XV’ but it was almost harder than playing against some of the boyos listed above!