Sporting Snippets - Part 41

Busch boys cause chaos in Aberystwyth

When we interviewed Tim Parry for an article recently he told us a story about the time he played for Haverfordwest RFC at Aberystwyth and almost got sent off because the referee thought he was taking the micky. Paul Busch had been replaced earlier with a cut head and trudged off to have a shower and get it cleaned up and later on The Blues decided to bring on Mark as a replacement for someone else.
We’ll let Tim take up the story.

“It had taken me 10 years to work out who was who out of the Busch twins, and a ref nearly sent me off because he said (about one of the twins) ‘He can't come back on the field he's been subbed,’ and when I told him it was the other half of identical twins he thought I was pulling the wool over his eyes and was not impressed!

“There was uproar amongst the Aber players which made it worse as they complained bitterly. In the end, as some of our players fell about laughing, the official asked to see the other Busch on the touchline but he was nowhere to be seen as he'd already gone for a shower!

"It caused a great deal of laughter from both sides as we waited for Busch No 1 so he could be seen and Busch No 2 to be allowed to start his stint.”

His comments brought back memories for this writer because, as he said, I could never tell which was which but I can tell you this - although I still have the problem today – I can safely say that Busch Boys were great servants of Haverfordwest RFC and a real pleasure to know!

Mark and Paul Busch

 Powell’s power pays off

Pembrokeshire’s rugby coach Trevor James was never afraid to try out new ideas and so he must have been delighted with one such plan which produced a vital converted try in the county’s match against a strong Swansea side.

At an attacking scrum five, Pembroke’s diminutive winger Jeff Powell joined the pack as they eventually drove over the Swansea line for late, great No 8 Steve James (Haverfordwest) to claim the touchdown.

There were lots of light-hearted comments from supporters on the touchline as Jeff strode purposefully back onto the wing for the kick-off  as a winger who was about 10 stone soaking wet!

During that season, which was the county’s 50th, they also played Crawshay’s XV at Pembroke Dock quins (with Terry Holmes and Allan Martin in the opposition), Neath and Llanelli (where he readily admits he was given a roasting by Peter Hopkins!).

*Jeff now lives in Australia and regularly reads our web-site and ‘Sporting Snippets’ – so it is a nice chance to say hello to a terrific rugby player and cracking cricketing colleague (and opening bat partner) whose commitment, allied to natural skill, saw him score heaps of tries, especially at a higher level in England with sale for six seasons, as well as becoming one of the best players of his era in the county with Pembroke Cricket Club.

Jeff Powell

Local lads feature well for Welsh Youth XV

Neil TrumanIn 1985 the Welsh Youth rugby team played a celebration rugby match against Neyland and included in the Welsh team were Neil Truman (Tenby United), Richard Kenniford (Pembroke Dock Quins), Howard John (Haverfordwest), Simon Perkins and Barry Beeken (Narberth).

As I said at the time they were certainly breeding them big in those days  because props Barry and Simon were six feet tall and weighed 15 stone, whilst No 8 Richard stood at six feet three inches in his stockinged feet and also weighed 15 stone.

He grabbed a try from a base of the scrum whilst centre Neil ‘Tatty’ Truman might have been a lot smaller but managed to score two good tries and almost claimed a hat-trick but was hauled down inches short.
I also said at the time that any club in the county would be thrilled to have such talented players on their books.


Kevin can still boogie – even on crutches!

Kevin JenkinsI regard Kevin Jenkins as one of my longest-lasting friends in local sport and he was a great captain for Pembroke Cricket Club, leading them to their first-ever final in the Harrison-Allen Bowl, where they beat Cresselly, and a very long-serving footballer with Angle AFC, where he also led the team by example from his role in midfield.

He also enjoyed himself in the bar afterwards, win or lose, which accounted for the fact that he was hugely popular with opponents in both sports – but even ‘Jenks’ was a little downcast after completing another season of the summer sport, only to break his ankle in the very first match of the Angel footballing season.

It meant a visit to Withybush, ankle in plaster and crutches – but he was back to his normal self  the following week when he attended the Pembroke Cricket Club dinner and after the presentations he was first on his feet, leading the dancing with his usual smooth moves as he balanced on his crutches and had a great time!

So well done Kev – and thanks for being the best captain I ever played cricket with (mind you, I had a few ropey ones as well!).


Mike went off to Guernsey – but is back at Carew now!

Mike BraceIn 1985 ‘Sporting Snippets’ was saying goodbye to popular Carew sporting all-rounder Mike Brace, who was just off to pursue a new teaching career in Guernsey and we were of the opinion that the village’s sporting scene was Carew’s loss whilst it was certainly the Channel Island’s gain.

He was also heavily involved as a selector for the Pembrokeshire Youth cricket team, where he put his wealth of experience as an opening bowler and very good middle-order batsman to good use.

Because so it proved because Mike played cricket for the island for many years and was actually captain for a considerable time, with ace commentator John Arlott as the club president as they played lots of touring sides and also went off on loads of trips themselves.

One such regular was Sir Ian Botham and he clearly enjoyed himself with Mike and Co in Guernsey and Mike remained on the island until he retired, when he came back to Carew and has been welcomed with open arms as he tends the club’s wicket, does lots of painting and anything else that needs doing, and is sure to be just as busy again when the sports-mad village returns to footballing action!


County’s rugby team battle back well to beat West Wales

Ben ChildsPembroke County RFC played lots of matches in 1985 against other county teams in the Welsh Counties’ Cup and some top-class teams as well.

In 1985 they fought back from an early deficit to beat West Wales 24-19 under the floodlights at The Observatory Field, the home of Milford Haven RFC.

Leading their talented backs was Ben Childs, making a welcome return from ‘up the line’ to and all four conversions of a penalty try and others from Andrew Morgan, Andrew Phillips and Clive James, playing at full back so Ben could occupy the No 10 spot.

It was a cracking success against a team that included several Llanelli players – and wouldn’t it be great now – 36 years on – if we were treated to such fixtures again when rugby finally gets under way again?