Irish dancer Sam Davies is reeling from his latest success on the international stage.

He proudly stepped into fifth place in the senior men’s competition in the World Irish Dancing Championships at the weekend.

With the first four podium spots taken by dancers from the USA and Canada, 25-year-old Sam, from New Hedges,near Tenby, was the category’s top placer from the UK, Ireland and mainland Europe.

“It was an amazing achievement, as the standard was phenomenal,” one of Sam’s teachers, former Riverdancer, Dara O’Shea Delap, said afterwards.

Billed as the Olympics of Irish dancing, the CLRG World Championships were held in London for the first time in their 44-year history. Five thousand dancers from as far afield as Japan and Australia attended the week-long event, along with an estimated 25,000 relatives, teachers and supporters.

The senior men’s contest saw nearly 50 dancers taking part, and Sam said: “The competition was fierce and there were some incredible dancers on stage. There were at least a dozen who deserved a place in the top five, so I was thrilled with what I achieved.”

Sam, a former pupil of Greenhill School, Tenby, started Irish dancing as a nine-year-old with the Hynes School of Irish Dancing in Saundersfoot. He joined the renowned Scoil Rince Ui She in Dublin six years ago while a mathematics student at the city’s Trinity College.

After the excitement of the Worlds, he now faces a more down-to-earth challenge this week as he sits two more exams towards his qualification as an actuary in London.