Monday, January 24, 2011
Ospreys hosted Toulon in what was a bit of a dead rubber at the Liberty Stadium on the weekend. Pride was on the line for the home side, who came away 29-17 winners over the weakened tourists, who had already qualified for the knockout stages.
Aside from the win for Ospreys, the great news for Welsh rugby is that ace winger Shane Williams came off the bench and was fantastic, coming back from an injury that many thought would see him sitting out of the early stages of the Six Nations.
It was Williams first outing since dislocating his shoulder against South Africa in November and he looked fresh as ever, setting up a try for Nikki Walker and looking threatening with ball in hand. Hes since been called back into the Wales squad.
"Im just chuffed Im back three weeks early. The timing is perfect. Maybe it was meant to be. Who knows? When I had the injury, they were talking 12 to 13 weeks. But Ive had injuries before and Ive always seemed to come back early. I dont know what it is," Williams said.
"I was a bit worried this time with the age factor and everything. But I just played it by ear. It isnt an injury you can mess around with. Ive said this is going to be my last international year and the last thing I wanted to do was rush back, play a couple of minutes and make the injury worse.
"I wasnt going to push it. Ive come to a stage now where youve got to look after your body and that was the main thing really. I wanted to make sure I was 100 per cent fit before I played any rugby. But Ive been lucky. Ive worked very hard to get back and the rehab has gone very well," he added.
Toulon had scored through Matt Henjak and Rory Lamont and were 17-12 up when Williams came on, but he sparked things and set up the Walker try with typically brilliant simplicity, if thats even a term. Walker strolled over after Williams summed things up.
Alun Wyn Jones scored late on, sealing a good win that keeps up their unbeaten home record in Europe since December 2005.
Shane Williams out for 10 weeks following Francois Steyn tackle