Dafydd Rees is a member of our prolific back row who together has ensured that the team has enjoyed such a successful season. He hails from Caerphilly in the valleys of the Principality where rugby is the major sport and Welsh the first language. He’s intensely proud of his roots but says the only thing he never inherited was any musical ability, in his own words he sings like a rather flat walrus.
Whilst at school he was coached by his PE Teacher Jeremy Evans who he says was a martinet, a strict disciplinarian, but taught Dafydd so much about the number 7 position. So successful was he, that he gained county honours at under15 and 16 levels becoming the school first team Captain of Rugby, for his final two years. During this time he was selected to represent Welsh Students and East Wales at rugby league!
After school, he headed to Manchester Metropolitan University, gained his rugby colours and qualified as a Chartered Physiotherapist and currently practices at North Manchester General Hospital. Although we have an excellent medical staff at MRUFC it’s always convenient to have an on-pitch practitioner on hand, immediately available for injuries.
Graduating in 2018 he was looking for a club and became attracted to Macclesfield because of the high standard of play and attractive style of rugby. The warm welcome he received at Priory Park cemented his opinion, and he’s been a major force in our team for the last two seasons.
Most English back row players hold Sale Sharks and England’s Tom Curry as their role model but Rees would most like to emulate Justin Tipuric and the likes of Martyn Williams, also praising Eben Etzebeth.
Having learned to coach in Wales he’s been turning his hand to helping the next generation as Head Coach to the Under 18s at Bowdon Rugby Club; often getting good-natured verbal abuse there, due to Bowdon’s ongoing rivalry with our 2nd, 3rd, and 4th teams.
His own fitness is an obsession; he trains five times a week at 5.30am, in order to get a full routine at the gym before heading to Crumpsall for his day’s work. In addition, he never misses a squad session and with matches on Saturdays and coaching on Sunday it’s no wonder he’s like a human dynamo on the pitch. It is a puzzle how he fits life together with his boyhood sweetheart living in Wales it must be difficult, but he sees her as often as possible.
Like most, he finds some of the long-distances to away fixtures rather tedious, but the return coach journey is always good after a victory. He credits the second row Tom Burden as one of the main forces for encouraging the team into social events, which he loves and would happily enjoy plenty more.
Dafydd reflected back to his own days captaining sides saying: “I relish the opportunity to be one the leaders within the group and have learned a lot from Tom Morton’s captaincy style; and of course, I would love the opportunity, to someday, captain Macclesfield 1st XV”. He has accumulated quite a few Clapham’s tankards at Macc, for being named as Man of the Match, which if he continues his great form, currently from the number 8 spot, it may need him to extend his trophy shelf next season.