Leigh Halfpenny: Scarlets' capture of Wales star pains Blues - Jonathan Davies

Leigh Halfpenny
Leigh Halfpenny has won 71 Wales caps and scored 619 points

Scarlets' likely capture of Leigh Halfpenny will be a blow for Welsh rivals Cardiff Blues, says Wales dual-code great Jonathan Davies.

The Wales and British and Irish Lions full-back, 28, is out of contract after three seasons with French side Toulon.

"I'm not sure how the Blues are feeling, because they were the ones that I thought were going to sign him with the WRU," Davies said.

"So I'm sure they're not very happy with the whole situation."

Halfpenny left Blues for Toulon ahead of the 2014-15 season and his former side had been keen to bring him back to Wales when his Toulon deal ended this summer.

Blues chief executive Richard Holland said the deal had foundered over the length of the National Dual Contract [NDC] on offer.

But Halfpenny now seems set to accept an NDC with Scarlets, who it is thought will pay 40% of the contract with the Welsh Rugby Union footing the other 60%.

"I'm not sure what happened there but it seems the Scarlets have sneaked it under their noses," Davies added.

"Scarlets by winning the Pro12 would have been a bigger incentive maybe to go there.

"He's a Gorseinon boy so he'll be moving closer to home, so you can see the attraction there.

"It's a great move for Scarlets and it's great for Welsh rugby, because you want to see your best players playing at home."

Leigh Halfpenny and Liam Williams
Liam Williams (right) was selected ahead of Halfpenny at full-back for three Lions Tests against New Zealand in June 2017

Halfpenny would be a straight replacement at Scarlets for Liam Williams, who has joined Saracens and outshone him at full-back for the Lions in New Zealand.

But Halfpenny remains one of the best goal-kickers in world rugby, although it is thought that his limited availability this season for club rugby also made him a less attractive option to many English and French clubs.

He will have to sit out the start of the season because of his participation on the Lions tour, and then will also be absent on Wales duty.

"Although it's a good marquee signing, it all depends on how many games he's going to play in the year as well," Davies added.

"He'll be resting from the Lions and then you've got the November internationals and the Six Nations.

"It'll be interesting to see the value the Scarlets get out of him."

Top Stories