Sam Warburton ends his reign as captain of the Wales Rugby Team. Alun Wyn Jones has been selected to take over his position. Ospreys lock Alun, of 31 years of age, is set to take on the captainship and the formal handing over will happen on 17th January. Interim coach, Rob Howley would also be announcing the members of the Six Nations team on the same day.
That is how the New Year has begun for the Wales Rugby team. Sam Warburton started off as a flanker from Cardiff Blues. He took on captainship of the team back in 2011. He led the team to victories against the Irish Lions as well as the British along with a win against Australia in the year 2013. Continue reading
Shane Williams has been in the news all week for the performance he put in for Glenswilly GAA. Being part of the Welsh rugby team, this performance saw him put the Glenswilly team at an advantageous position. It is not often that a team’s player stands out in the news for the performance he puts in for another team. Shane Williams’ performance also stands out as he played for a football club and not for a rugby one. This was another stunning example that has not often come across.
Williams received a lot of praises from the international audience. Many experts are talking about the magical display of talents that he put up despite tough weather conditions for the Gaelic football club. Many described him to be determined and committed as he stayed focused on the ball despite blizzard like conditions that prevailed during the game. The praises were more for the lad as he played a game that he does not play normally and that too at 40 years of age. Continue reading
When Wales run out against Australia on Saturday it will be the last time they are able to name record try scorer, Shane Williams. Over the last 12 years Williams has been key to Wales’ succeses scoring 55 tries in 86 appearances, winning two Grand Slams and making it to a World Cup Semi Final earlier this year. He will make his 87th appearance and final appearance at the Millennium Stadium, scene of so many of his international triumphs.
The impact of Shane Williams and his place in the hearts of all involved in Welsh Rugby was seen in their training session on Tuesday. All the players and coaches took to the field and trained wearing ‘Shane Williams’ masks. Williams was also given the honour of announcing the team for Saturdays repeat of the World Cup Bronze medal match. Williams’ face is everywhere in the Wales team hotel, with a picture even placed above the urinals in the toilets.
Williams although always recognised for his individual performances has always been the ultimate professional and nothing has changed ahead of the clash with Australia. The World Cup semi finalists have not beaten any of the Tri Nations sides for three years now and Williams is targeting going out on a high. He is still talking with excitement about the future of Welsh Rugby despite the fact it will be a future without Shane Williams on the wing. “The future for Wales is exciting. We have a number of talented youngsters coming through, brimming with confidence.” It seems strange to think of a Welsh team without Williams in nowadays, but it is a thought the Welsh public will have to get used to. The end of one era marks the beginning of another though, and with the likes of Sam Warburton, George North and Toby Faletau set the world alight in New Zealand and the Welsh are looking set to maintain their place at Rugby’s top table for many years to come.
Saturday will be an emotional day for Williams and the Welsh, but the future is exciting. A future that Williams will no doubt be enjoying with the rest of us.