What is your first rugby memory?
That would be going on a cold and wet Wednesday night with my Dad to watch Ystrad Rhondda. A mate of mine asked me to come down and I never really looked back after that and was hooked on the game. It was just a really good experience and I spent all of my early and young career, through all the mini and junior sections, at Ystrad.
When did Rugby become a serious passion for you?
It was from quite a young age that it became really important to me, I used to love playing and training midweek, then I started playing for school and District teams. My Dad played and I looked up to him and just followed him, he played for Treorchy and Treherbert. He had more clubs in the valleys than Tiger Woods!
When did you think about becoming a professional rugby player?
When I was about 15 or 16, I got asked to go to Cardiff to train and that was a year early from most of the boys I had played alongside. Then I was capped a couple or times at that age and that was when I really thought, I could make a real go of this. I got picked up by the Cardiff Academy and things just really kicked on from there for me.
When did you first become aware of the Ospreys?
I was always aware of the Ospreys, they were always one of teams you looked out for and watched when they were on TV. It was the likes of Adam Jones and Duncan Jones that you looked out for. They were props and I am too and now Duncan is coaching me. You always had mates who really supported the Ospreys and when the chance came to come here, I grabbed it with both hands. It’s mad to think I used to watch Duncan, and Alun Wyn Jones and Bradley Davies and I am now sharing a changing room with those two. I do pinch myself and remind myself how privileged I am to be here.
How important is the Ospreys legacy of appreciating and producing props for you?
The Ospreys always had a reputation for valuing what props do, and you do get that here. Working with Duncan, having a player like Tomas Francis to learn from, and then Paul James is usually around the place too. They are always available for a chat, give you little tips and that is something I really appreciate. Franny, Tom Botha, Ma’afu Fia and Rhys Henry have all been really good to me. They have all been superb, helped me, they do their extras and show you what it takes - you can’t ask for me really.
What are your personal goals with the Ospreys?
I just want to play. I have played for Bridgend and Ospreys A but I want to play for the first team. I just need to keep progressing, training well and working hard, and then see where that takes me. Toby has made it very clear if you train hard, he will pick you. As a player, you cannot ask for more than that. There are a lot of experienced players ahead of me but I just need to keep working and progressing.