Facing the music…

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The behaviour of Jonathan Davies has caused outrage

News that a former Welsh rugby international may become the fresh face of BBC coverage, throws the spotlight on why the corporation continues to use another who employed foul language to abuse publicly a fan, called others “bell ends”, was filmed spraying a fire extinguisher into the face of a celebrity friend, accused us of “negative journalism” for raising it, and a supporter of his said he would “whack” our Editor Phil Parry.

Sam Warburton – tipped

Former Wales and Lions player Sam Warburton from Cardiff has the credentials potentially to become the new face of BBC rugby – according to the legendary anchorman standing down from the role.

John Inverdale, synonymous with presenting the BBC’s coverage of the Six Nations, is moving aside after 30 years in the role, paving the way for a successor.

John Inverdale – ‘training’

He has said: “Give him (Mr Warburton) a bit of training and he could be presenting rugby wherever as from next season. He is just fantastic.”

Mr Warburton is already fast making a name for himself as a rugby pundit, impressing viewers with the work he has done during the Six Nations and the Autumn Nations Cup.

For controversial Jonathan Davies however it has been a very different story.

He was dubbed by rugby fans on Twitter “joke”“boring”, and “unbearable”. One said that Mr Davies “does my head in”, and a further viewer stated:  “Ffs that little irritant Jonathan Davies again ! Reaches for mute button”. Another declared:  “oh fuck off jonathan davies your (sic) boring the fuck out of me now”, and again it was asked why BBC Sport was employing him.

A ‘moron’?

But this is not the first time Mr Davies has incurred the wrath of rugby supporters.

During the Wales v England game he was described on Twitter as a “moron” “total disgrace”“awful”, and a fan said he wanted to rip his ears off “every time (he) opens his mouth”.

In the Wales game against Ireland The Eye showed how Mr Davies had then been dubbed on Twitter, “awful”“biased”“insufferable”, spouting “bullshit” and sounding as if he was “masturbating”, with The BBC being urged to “get rid” of him.

A further television viewer said previously:  “@BBCSport can you please stop Jonathan Davies from having an input into ANY rugby commentary! It’s painful! I’ve had to turn the sound off and listen to Radio commentary of the game

The referee was French so ‘anything could happen’ according to Jonathan Davies…

Before a previous game he said live on air:  “…the referee’s French, so anything could happen”.

Yet Mr Davies had also hit the headlines earlier for the wrong reasons.

Recently he said on the YouTube podcast ‘Jiffy and Stubbsy’ that he was “saddened” another contributor was not using social media, adding:  “I don’t give a monkey’s about the bell ends…”. In another episode of the podcast, Mr Davies said:  “If I say something, all of a sudden, people write a tweet and go ‘he should be sacked’ and copy in the BBC”. It has also emerged that earlier he had told a rugby fan on Twitter:  “fuck you and your lads’ cock”.

Tim Davie – the Director General of the BBC. His organisation is under fire over neutrality

After seeing Mr Davies’ tweets and comment on YouTube, a leading sports journalist who supplies material for UK publications, told The Eye:  “He (Jonathan Davies) really is a disgusting individual”.

These are set against an alarming backdrop as Mr Davies’ bosses at The BBC have also come under fire, and when neutrality is being emphasised.

But he appears to be nervous about some of the reaction he receives on social media, although it seems that much of the criticism may be valid, and Mr Davies, who is an extensive user of Twitter, has rarely been far from the news.

From Jonathan Davies to Carol Vorderman on social media with the caption ‘just for you Carol’

He has been publicly condemned by television viewers for talking “some shit”, as well as being “so so thick”.

On social media Mr Davies has sent a picture of himself with no clothes on to TV and radio star Carol Vorderman.

He has also faced huge criticism following statements which have included calling the Rhondda MP Chris Bryant a “knob” on Twitter, for asking about childcare during a House of Commons debate.

The fury of Mr Davies has too been directed at journalist Marcus Stead on social media after he had criticised what he views as the Welsh establishment. He engaged in an extraordinary spat with him, again using Twitter, in which he branded Mr Stead, an “attention seeking nobody”, a “sad pathetic waste of time” and ‘hashtagged’ the words “absolute bell end”.

Marc Winchester – ‘I’ll whack him’

Mr Davies also posted on social media a fake picture of one rugby fan, a well-known Welsh supporter, wearing a Pontypridd RFC shirt but he was then slammed for “essentially fat shaming someone because they disagree with them”, and the observer linked the comment to @BBCSport @BBCNews 5liveSport and @BBCWalesNews, saying they should be “embarrassed”, and that it was a “Dick move”.

But Mr Davies has said on social media that The Eye’s reporting of all this was “negative journalism”, and a supporter of his, Marc Winchester, wrote on the Twitter thread:  “I’ll whack him (The Eye Editor Phil Parry). This threat was described as a ‘joke’ by Mr Winchester, who has proclaimed he was a multi-millionaire but ran a convenience store, yet it was still reported to the police who mounted an investigation.

Ever since Hitler’s death wild conspiracy theories have insisted he remained alive

A further shocked viewer of another of Mr Davies’ recent ‘re-tweets’ of one message that “lockdowns are unnecessary” said:  “This seems close to being a Covid conspiracy theory now”.

Conspiracy theories have a long and disturbing history. They are particularly relevant now after the US Presidential elections, with Donald Trump seizing on them to say the Democrats ‘stole’ the election but providing no evidence to support his baseless charge that there was ‘mass fraud’.

Jonathan Davies sprayed a fire extinguisher INTO the face of Nigel Owens

Apart from this worrying information, warnings were also repeated about the hazards involved in the misuse of fire extinguishers after experts were shown horrifying pictures from a video of Mr Davies using one to spray into the face of his friend, former international rugby referee Nigel Owens, as he sat in his car while another person filming the dangerous stunt laughed. This was posted on the internet as well.

The escapade with a fire extinguisher was in the car park of an independent TV facilities house near what was then the headquarters of BBC Cymru Wales (BBC CW) in Llandaff, Cardiff, in 2014, and was condemned as “incredibly dangerous”.

‘Negative journalism’?

It prompted a series of outraged comments at the time on a sports Facebook (FB) site.

One critic said:  “…did he give any thought to what injuries he may have caused?…We all like a good laugh sadly this isn’t it”. A further detractor declared that Mr Davies was a “fucking prick”, while a different person stated that he didn’t think “people realise how dangerous CO2 extinguishers are”. In the clip now on YouTube, Mr Owens escapes from the car running, but Mr Davies uses the fire extinguisher again, as the person filming it exclaims in Welsh “OH, NO!”, and Mr Owens then shouts “IDIOT!” at him pointing.

Book posterBut there may be further shouting from viewers if another Welsh rugby international is employed by The BBC to present rugby coverage, when officials still use a pundit who spouted foul language to abuse publicly a fan, called others “bell ends”, was filmed spraying a fire extinguisher into the face of a celebrity friend, accused us of “negative journalism” for raising it, and a supporter of his said he would “whack” our Editor Phil Parry

 

Phil’s memories of his astonishing decades long award-winning career in journalism (including news behind the headlines of sport) as he was gripped by the rare neurological disabling condition Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP), have been released in a major book ‘A GOOD STORY’. Order the book now!