As the Commonwealth Games fast approaches the Baton has been making its way around the country in celebration. While football won’t play apart at Glasgow 2014, it has made its mark on the relay and specifically through bearers such as coach Rhys Davis.
Considered a role model in the community, Rhys found out he was being nominated in an unusual way. “I found out I was nominated to begin with just through word of mouth from the children I coach, who said they had been voting for me” he said. “And then the other coaches told me they had put my name forward because they thought I would be a good role model, so that was pretty humbling to hear.”
Rhys has been hard at work and has been in and out of schools in Fife promoting multiple sports such as Rugby, Basketball, and even Shinty through taster sessions. This is part of his work with Fife School of Sport Education and with Active Fife. It’s this work alongside his coaching at Hillfield Swifts 17’s Girls which made Rhys a perfect nomination and eventually a bearer.
“On the day of the announcements some people were having trouble with their emails (some selected bearers received blank emails with no text)” said Rhys. “Thankfully mine was working but I had to do a double take. I read the email once and came back again in ten minutes to check it. It was a moment of real joy and really nice to see.”
Increasing participation in sport is the main focus of his work and while it can be a difficult task it’s one that Rhys has always enjoyed. “It’s always been something I’ve been interested in” he said. “It’s hard work but I really enjoy it.”
Exactly a week on from the day and the moment Rhys noted his name in the Commonwealth Games history books, he noted he wasn’t short of support with Aunties, Uncles and Hillfield Swifts coaches and players in attendance. Rhys added “My Mum and Dad were very proud. They’ve always known I’ve wanted to do this kind of work so it’s nice for them to see it going so well.”
Rhys admitted before the occasion "It feels such an honour to carry the baton. I'm really excited about being part of the relay.”
He added “I hope that seeing me up there will mean something to the children I work with and give them something to aspire to."