JOSH Turnbull has achieved the significant milestone of playing his 200th Guinness PRO14 match - and the Cardiff Blues player is now targeting the record total of Championship appearances.

The Haverfordwest-born forward became only the fifth player in the Championship’s history to reach a double century of appearances, with 114 of those in Blues colours after leaving the Scarlets.

The only other players to have reached 200 appearances are Matthew Rees (202), Ross Ford (206), Ian Keatley (212) and the former Connacht talisman and record holder, John Muldoon (254).

The 32-year-old, who is a former pupil of Ysgol Gyfun Emlyn, believes he could still over-take the Irishman at the top of the table - and the Welsh record held by Rees is now within his grasp.

“John Muldoon is on the top, but I’ve got a couple more years left in these legs and I’m going to go after that quite hard,” said Turnbull, who toasted the occasion with a win for the Blues at Parc y Scarlets.

“If would be quite nice to be up there when I do decide to hang up the boots. There are some good guys up there, and Ian Keatley is still playing.

“It would be nice to chase down someone like Matthew Rees, and then pick them off one-by-one.

“John Muldoon didn’t get much international recognition, but he was a club stalwart for Connacht. Every week he’d be there, banged up and playing.

“He ended up winning a league trophy with Connacht when they had a blinding season. 254 is some number to chase down and to get close to that would be some achievement.”

Turnbull, who represented Wales at Under-18, 19 and 20 levels, and played in two IRB Under-19 World Championships, made his debut for the Scarlets against the Exeter Chiefs back in 2007.

In January 2011 he was called up to the Wales squad for the Six Nations, and made his debut as a second-half substitute against Scotland at Murrayfield, going on to accumulate 10 senior caps.

He switched to Cardiff Blues in 2014, after more than 100 of appearances for the Llanelli-based region, and has moved to within two appearances of his 150th appearance for the capital club.

“I can still remember my first league game for Scarlets up in Edinburgh in 2008. It was quite early on in the season and only lasted 40 minutes, because I got injured just before half time,” said Turnbull.

“I’ve had a better run since then, and I’ve enjoyed it all. As you get older you start to appreciate it a bit more. You don’t get many of these achievements, so you have to grasp them with both hands.

“As you get older, you get more durable and I’ve always felt that I’ve been consistent in my performances.

"Your body becomes used to the physicality and the bumps, and you know what you can play through, and what you can’t play through.

“I’ve been able to maintain that for a number of years now, and you’re able to pick up appearances week-by-week, without letting your standards drop.

“You’ll have the odd games during a season where you might not hit the same numbers, but I’ve always prided myself on trying to be consistent, and maintaining that.”